Dec. 11, 1917 Forest Park Cook County Illinois, USA
Dec. 22, 1941 Central Luzon, Philippines
Pfc. Henry J. Deckert was a member of B Company, 192nd Tank Battlion which was originally an Illinois National Guard Tank Company. On December 22, 1941, while covering the withdraw of Filipino and American forces at Lingayen Gulf in the Philippine Islands, Pfc. Henry Deckert became the first American tank crew member killed in tank to tank action in WWII. According to the other members of his tank crew, a Japanese shell hit their Stewart tank and exploded. The concussion from the explosion entered the tank through the bow-gun port decapitating Pfc. Henry Deckert. He was buried by his tank crew at a Catholic Cemetery. After the war, his family requested that his remains be returned to the United States. He is buried next to his parents at Oak Ridge Cemetery in Hillside, Illinois.