Corp Henry Louis Kowal

Corp Henry Louis Kowal

Birth
Mount Vernon, Westchester County, New York, USA
Death 13 Aug 1942 (aged 22)
Guadalcanal, Solomon Islands
Burial Manila, Capital District, National Capital Region, Philippines
Plot Tablets of the Missing
Memorial ID 56752463 · View Source
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Henry Louis Kowal was the son of Polish immigrants Joseph and Mary Kowal. He was born and educated in Westchester County, New York. After high school, he entered into the real estate field for a career.

On June 21, 1940, Henry left his job as a clerk at a real estate office and joined the Marine Corps Reserves. He attended his boot camp training at Marine Corps Base, Quantico, Virginia and at the Marine Corps Recruit Training Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina. In November of 1940 Henry was called to active duty and was sent to Item Company, Seventh Marine Regiment at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for temporary duty. Over the course of 1941, Kowal changed regiments three times (1st, 5th & 7th); each time remaining in the regiment's Item Company. He was promoted to Private First Class shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and by April 1942 was a Corporal with H&S Company, Fifth Marines, working in the intelligence section.

Kowal trained in North Carolina and New Zealand before landing on Guadalcanal on August 7, 1942.

The Fifth Marines arrived on Guadalcanal on 8/7/1942. On the evening of 8/13, a patrol led by Colonel Frank Goettge had left that area and heavy gunfire could be heard coming from the direction that the patrol had headed. One of the men from that patrol appeared at Division headquarters at 0530. The man reported that the patrol had been ambushed and was pinned down on the beach. The Marine reported he had left the patrol nearly seven hours earlier and had swum almost five miles through the ocean to get back to headquarters and make his report. As a result of this report, Henry's company was soon loaded into a landing craft and at 0650 hours, departed to the site of the ambush. no survivors were found but a large camp of Japanese soldiers was located and during a firefight with the enemy, Henry was killed in action. He had been on Guadalcanal for only five days.

Henry was buried on Guadalcanal but the grave site was lost. He lies there in an unmarked grave known only to God.

Corporal Henry Louis Kowal, Sn# 286460, earned the following badges/decorations for his service during World War II:
- Purple Heart Medal
- Combat Action Ribbon
- Navy & Marine Corps Presidential Unit Citation Ribbon
- Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
- American Defense Service Medal
- Asiatic-Pacific Theater of Operations Campaign Medal with bronze battle/campaign star
- World War II Victory Medal
- Marine Corps Marksmanship Badge
- Marine Corps Basic Qualification Badge with bar(s)

**NOTE** - A portion of this bio is based on information from the website missingmarines.com. They have done a fantastic job of researching approximately 3000 US Marines whose bodies were lost in the war. This writer wholeheartedly recommends their site for researchers or families of the missing. - Rick Lawrence, MSgt., USMC/USAFR {RET})

Gravesite Details Entered the service from New York.

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  • Maintained by: Rick Lawrence
  • Originally Created by: CWGC/ABMC
  • Added: 8 Aug 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 56752463
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Corp Henry Louis Kowal (25 Aug 1919–13 Aug 1942), Find A Grave Memorial no. 56752463, citing Manila American Cemetery and Memorial, Manila, Capital District, National Capital Region, Philippines ; Maintained by Rick Lawrence (contributor 47207615) .