Henry J. Richter – Colonel, United States Army

Henry J. Richter, Colonel, United States Army
Courtesy of the Sheboygan (Wisconsin) Press
April 12, 1965

Colonel Henry J. Richter, who in l945 at 28 was the third highest ranked  Lieutenant Colonel of his age in the nation, died April 11, 1965, in the Panama Canal Zone of a heart attack. He was 47.

Completing a three-year tour of duty in the Canal Zone, Colonel Richter had been scheduled for reassignment soon in the United States. He was serving in the G-3 section  (operations and training) at U.S. Army headquarters at Fort Amador in the Canal Zone at the time of his death.

Previously he had served as commandant of the Army’s 193rd Infantry Brigade at Fort Kobbe in the Canal Zone.

When he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in August 1945, Colonel Richter, then 28 became the third youngest ranked officer in the nation.

A native of Sheboygan, Wisconsin, Colonel Richter was the son of Mr. and Mrs. George Richter.  His wife is the former Janet Reynolds.

Colonel Richter and his family were scheduled to return to the United States later this month to attend graduation ceremonies for their daughter, Kay, a student at Toby-Coburn College in New York City.

Varied Assignments

His next assignment would have been with the Army War College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He then would have been in line for promotion to Brigadier General.

Colonel Richter held varied assignments since entering the U.S. Army in l941 as a Second Lieutenant following graduation from Ripon College.

At one time (l951-53) he served as editor-in-chief of the European edition of the famed Stars and Stripes whose 100,000 daily copies find their way to servicemen in many parts of the world.

After entering the Army, he served at Fort Sheridan, Illinois, with two regiments of the 9th Infantry Division until February 1942.

After a tour with the director of schools at Camp Robinson, Arkansas, he was assigned to a battalion at Camp Atterbury, Indiana, and later to the G-3 section at the headquarters of XI Corps in Chicago.

He was then assigned overseas with the XI Corps and later joined the 158th Regimental Combat Team, taking part in the assault landings in the New Guinea campaign.

Served in Japan

Reassigned to XI Corps, Colonel Richter became assistant G-3, serving in that capacity throughout the Philippine campaign and went to Japan at the end of the war.

After a short period in the United States, he returned to Japan where he was assistant G-3 with the U.S. Eighth Army.  Subsequently he was assigned to the 38th Regimental Combat Team, and then went to Camp Carson as a battalion commander and later as regimental executive officer.  In 1950 he went to Europe for the assignment with Stars and Stripes.

In l957 he was transferred to Vietnam to serve as a member of the Military Advisory Group at Saigon. In the interim he completed a 10-month course at the Army War College at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, one of the Army’s highest educational institutions.

Colonel Richter was born in Sheboygan on July 8, 1917.  While attending Ripon College, Colonel Richter was named a cadet lieutenant colonel, the highest post open to Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) students.  He also commanded the drill team which was considered one of the best units in the Sixth Corps area.

In addition to his wife, parents and daughter, survivors are a son, Rick; four brothers, Fred, John, Robert and Walter, all of Sheboygan, and two sisters, Mrs. Edward (Meta) Canisius and Mrs. Harvey (Emma) Karl, both of Sheboygan.



DATE OF BIRTH: 07/08/1917
DATE OF DEATH: 04/11/1965

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