Harold R. Haberkorn
Biography: Harold Robert Haberkorn was born on April 13, 1913, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He was the son of Henry William Haberkorn and Elsie B. Matthews. The family moved to Los Angeles when he was very young and he attended John C. Fremont High School in Los Angeles, California. Harold received his B.A. from the University of California in L.A. He received his law degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1937 and passed his bar examination the same year. After practicing for three years in Los Angeles, he moved to San Bernardino in 1940 but the war soon intervened.
Service Time: Harold entered the Army on January 23, 1942. We don’t have any information on his activities prior to this date but on July 10th, he is shown in the Morning Reports as having been appointed the Battalion Assistant Adjutant for the 607th Tank Destroyer Battalion. This entry also states this position was an “Additional Duty” so he was obviously with the unit prior to this date. On August 21st, 1st Lieutenant Haberkorn is listed as being appointed the Battalion Adjutant Vice. On March 10, 1943, he was appointed as a Captain. In June of that year, he is listed as being the S-1 (Personnel Officer). At some point after July, 1943, he was transferred to Company B and assigned as Company Commander and on March 1, 1944, he was moved back to Headquarters.
They left the Port of Boston on April 13, 1944, aboard the U.S.S. Wakefield, landing in Liverpool, England on the 21st. More training followed before Headquarters and Company A landed at Utah Beach, Normandy, France on June 17, 1944.
The 607th supported the advance on Cherbourg and fought along the Seves River in July. Participating in the drive to Le Mans and envelopment of the Falaise Pocket in August, they advanced to the Moselle River in September and supported operations against Metz, France, through November. They converted from the towed 3” anti-tank guns to a self-propelled battalion equipped with M36 tank destroyers in time for the final assault on Metz. Joining the drive toward the Saar River, they supported the capture of Saarlautern, Germany, and the subsequent fight against the Siegfried Line in December.
Deployed to the Ardennes sector in January 1945, they were soon committed against the Siegfried Line again in early February in the Schnee Eifel area of Germany. Supporting the capture of Koblenz in mid-March, they crossed the Rhine River at Boppard on March 25th. They subsequently fought through Hessen and Thüringen during April and reached the Czechoslovak border near Plauen by mid-April. Thereafter, they remained in defensive positions.
Like many other men in the 607th, on June 28, 1945, Harold was transferred to the 602nd Tank Destroyer Battalion and was discharged at the rank of Major in 1946.
He was awarded the American Campaign, World War II Victory and Army of Occupation-Germany medals along with the EAME medal and credit for the campaigns of Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace and Central Europe.
Harold remained in the military, perhaps the Reserves or National Guard, and served in both Korea and Vietnam. He retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.
After returning home, Harold resumed his law practice and in 1952, he was appointed superior court commissioner. Four years later, he was appointed to the municipal court bench by Governor Goodwin G. Knight and in 1963, he was appointed to the superior court by Gov. Edmund G. Brown Sr. He retired from the bench at the end of January 1977. At some point, he married the former Ruth E. St. Aubin, from New York and the daughter of Thomas H. St. Aubin and Leah Marion Leonard. They had two children, a daughter, Lindsay, and a son Robert. Harold was active in the San Bernardino Family Service Agency, the Boy Scouts, the County Bar Association, the First Congregation Church, the Elks Lodge and the Exchange Club.
Harold passed away on October 15, 1996, and was buried in the Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside, CA. We would like to thank Find-A-Grave contributor, CRob, for use of the grave marker photo.