BM1c Henry Schroeder

Unknown Sailor

BM1c Henry Schroeder

Henry Schroeder knew heartache and hardship from a young age. His mother suffered even greater loss.

Henry was born Jan. 26, 1906 in Brooklyn, New York to German immigrants. His mother, Margaret Garfs Schroeder, was a homemaker and his father, Henry C. Schroeder, sold groceries.

Henry, the oldest of six children, was 10 when two of his brothers, ages two and four, died within weeks of each other in late 1916. Their father, age 39, died less than two years later of pneumonia and influenza.

The January 1920 Census said Mrs. Schroeder worked at home as an assembler to support her four remaining children, ages two to 14. She married another German immigrant, August Stahnke, a blacksmith, before 1930. He died in December 1945.

Meanwhile, Henry Schroeder enlisted in the Navy in May 1924. He was a boatswain’s mate and petty officer first class on the U.S.S. Arizona when he was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Dec. 7, 1941.

Three weeks before his death his only living brother, John, enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He served until December 1945.

Sources: The Central New Jersey Home News; The Courier-News of Bridgewater, New Jersey; military registration card; Census; New York birth and death records; U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs death file. This profile was researched and written on behalf of the U.S.S. Arizona Mall Memorial at the University of Arizona.

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