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Lester Ray Sheffield
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Birth: Jul. 5, 1928
Winter Beach
Indian River County
Florida, USA
Death: Jan. 4, 1963
Okinawa, Japan

A Lenoir City soldier was drowned off the shores of the East China Sea, Island of Okinawa on Friday, Jan. 4, according to word received here this week.

He was SFC Lester R. Sheffield of Lenoir City. Mrs. Sheffield, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James D. Wheat of 903 W. 2nd Ave., Lenoir City and their two sons, Dan, 6, and Dale, 4, were in Okinawa with her husband.

According to the report received here, Sgt. Sheffield and a companion were walking along a cliff on the island when an ocean wave swept over the cliff un expectedly and washed the two men off the edge. The companion caught on a rock ledge but Sgt. Sheffield was carried out into the ocean. The companion pulled himself to safety and ran for help. He said the last time he saw the victim he was treading water about 25 feet from shore. There is a strong undertow at that point, it was reported.

When help returned the Lenoir City soldier was nowhere in sight. A search both by helicopter and by land was carried out but no sign of the soldier was ever found.

The two men had gone to repair a generator and were returning along the cliff edge when the tragedy occured, according to Mr. Wheat, the father of Mrs. Sheffield. He said his daughter and her two sons were planning to return here by the first available transportation.

SFC Sheffield's parents, both deceased, were from Florida, Mr Wheat said, but the soldier grew up here, living with a brother Leon Sheffield who now lives in Florida. Another brother, Lloyd Sheffield, lives here.

SFC Sheffield, a career soldier in the U.S. Army Engineers, attended elementary schools here. He and Mrs. Sheffield had been married 10 years on Dec. 27. He had served eight years in the Army and had been stationed on Okinawa about three and one-half years. He and his family were due to return to the United States in July of this year.

from an article in the Lenoir City News.
Lenoir City, TN

(Error in report) He did not grow up in Lenoir City, but in Florida. He lived with his brother Leon in Lenoir City for awhile after he was grown and that is when he met his wife. Before coming to Lenoir City, he was a cowboy with the Rodeo Circuit, which made him a hero with the neighborhood kids.

Family links: 
  Timothy H Sheffield (1876 - 1959)
  Charity V Campbell Sheffield (1890 - 1936)
  Violet Julia Sheffield Bruander (1910 - 1960)*
  Della Lillie Sheffield Lawrence (1912 - 2007)*
  Timothy Leon Sheffield (1913 - 1989)*
  Leonard Edmond Sheffield (1916 - 1986)*
  Debbie Lenora Sheffield (1919 - 1921)*
  Nina E. Sheffield Ramsey (1922 - 1995)*
  Loyd Stanley Sheffield (1926 - 2006)*
  Lester Ray Sheffield (1928 - 1963)
*Calculated relationship
death date is incorrect on the marker
Winter Beach Cemetery
Winter Beach
Indian River County
Florida, USA
Maintained by: Glenda Sheffield
Originally Created by: Paula Kim Perkins Outlan...
Record added: Jun 03, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 19694165
Lester Ray Sheffield
Added by: Glenda Sheffield
Lester Ray Sheffield
Added by: Paula Kim Perkins Outland
Lester Ray Sheffield
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Denny Dabbs
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

You were our hero.
- Glenda Sheffield
 Added: Jan. 11, 2010

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