Lincoln, Leverne H. (804th)

Leverne H. Lincoln 1Leverne H. Lincoln

The following tribute was written by the Lincoln family:

Biography: Leverne Holt Lincoln was born on June 24, 1911 in Pacific Junction, Iowa, to Shirley C. and Rose Catherine (Holt) Lincoln.  He was the oldest of three brothers and his was a family of farmers who worked their Missouri River bottom farmland for generations.

Leverne graduated from Pacific Junction High School and then went on to Iowa State University, in Ames, where he attended for two years before having to move back home to help on the farm.  He was anxious to put his college training to use so he went to work as an engineer for Mills County, Iowa, and then he was able to join the US Bureau of Reclamation as a Civil Engineer. He worked on projects in Yellowstone National Park and a project in Tucumcari, New Mexico.

Service Time:  Leverne had joined the National Guard while in New Mexico and on January 1941, his unit was activated.  They were originally formed as the 104th Infantry Anti-Tank Battalion but at the outbreak of World War II, they were reorganized in January 1942, as the 804th Tank Destroyer Battalion.

Leverne H. Lincoln 2The photo on the left is Leverne in 1938, while working on the Yellowstone National Park project.

Leverne, now at the rank of Warrant Officer JG (Junior Grade), served with the 804th Tank Destroyer Battalion Headquarters Company through duty stations in California, Camp Hood Texas, Belfast, Ireland and England before shipping out to Oran, Africa, in January 1943.  He served in the 804th TD BN throughout his time in the Army as they moved through North Africa and into Italy.

During his service in North Africa, Leverne met 2nd Lt. Cecelia Washburn, who was serving in the US Army Nursing Corps and assigned to the 32nd Station Hospital in Tlemcen, Algeria.  Leverne and Cecelia were married on May 10, 1944 in Caserta, Italy.  Actually they were married three times on May 10th to satisfy all of the various government entities involved.  It took WWII to bring together a nurse from Massachusetts and an Iowa farm boy to meet in Africa and marry in Italy. The 804th would go on to receive credit for campaigns in Rome Arno, North Apennines and the Po Valley.

Marriage Certificate

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Shown in the photo above is Leverne and Cecilia with Principal Chief Nurse, Helen W. Brammer on the right and at left is 32nd Station Commanding Officer, Colonel Harold L. Goss.

A second photo, below, probably from one of the other marriage ceremonies, again shows Leverne and Cecilia, but this time her Maid of Honor, Lexie Miller is on the left and at right is who we believe to be the 804th’s medical officer.

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After the war, Leverne returned to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation as a Civil Engineer and worked on various water projects throughout New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas before his retirement in 1975, in Farmington, NM.  Leverne and Cecelia raised six children, 2 girls and 4 boys as they made their way through the Southwest.

Leverne H. Lincoln 4Leverne was very active in the Lions Club International and the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks rising to hold state positions in both organizations. Leverne passed away at home in Farmington, NM on December 9, 2000, and was buried in the Memory Gardens Cemetery in Farmington.

I want to thank Leverne’s son, Arthur, for providing the photos of his father and mother and for the tribute’s text. I also want to thank the Ballard family for use of the second wedding photo and a special thank you to Lowell Silverman for his research into the 32nd Station Hospital.