Local Officer Was Headed for States on Rotation Leave
After Three Years of Fighting Japs
The Manchester Leader & Evening Union - Saturday, June 16, 1945
VOLUME XXXIII. NO. 208. -- Price Five Cents
Died & buried at Sea
May 26, 1945
A Manchester captain who died at sea in the Pacific on May 26, 1945 and a Marine, wounded for the second time, were added to the list of casualties today. The number of New Hampshire men who have given their lives for their country has now reached the total of 1,364.
Elsewhere in the state, a Dover soldier died at a Florida camp, a Somersworth flier is missing over Japan, a Maine from Exeter and a soldier from Portsmouth were wounded in the Pacific.
Glad tidings were received by 11 families as members of their families were liberated from German prison camps.
CAPT. WILLIAM D. DOWNS, 25, husband of Mrs. Carol M. Downs of 428 Central Street, and son of Mr. and Mrs. William S. Downs of 558 Concord Street, who is reported to have died at sea in the Pacific on May 26, 1945.
Word that Captain Downs had died at sea was received by his wife, Mrs. Carol M. Downs, 428 Central Street, today. He was on his way home, having received a rotation leave back to the United States after having served three years in the Fiji Islands, New Hebrides, New Guinea and the Philippines. Details of his death are unknown here at the present time except that he died at sea on May 26, 1945, according to the War Department telegram.
Captain Downs had served under Admiral Halsey's command with the 31st Coast Artillery Battalion and later under General Douglas MacArthur in New Guinea and the Philippines, being attached to Lt. Gen. Walter Krueger's 6th Army. He was a graduate of the University of New Hampshire, class of 1941, and was a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity and Alpha Sigma, honorary architectural society. He was commissioned a second lieutenant of ROTC and entered the armed forces on Sept. 23, 1941. He was assigned to the Portsmouth Harbor Defences and later transferred to the southwest Pacific theatre of operations.
Survivors are his wife, and one daughter, Carol Ann, whom he had never seen, and his parents, Mr. and Mrs. William E. Downs.