MAJ William Henry Roodenburg
33rd Fighter Group, Headquarters Squandron
KIA 11 Jan, 1943
-- Susan Jane Roodenburg Perko --
William Henry Roodenburg was born in New York City in March, 1906. His father, John, had come to the U.S. from Holland to be a flute player.
His mother, Sophie Ellerbrook, was born in New York of German parents. He had one sister, Sophie, called Fifi.
He grew up in Yorkville, on the east side of Manhattan, went to P.S. 6, Townsend Harris Hall, an elite public high school for the gifted, and
the College of the City of New York, known at the time as "the poor boy's Harvard", from which he graduated in 1925 at 19. He majored in Economics,
and was in R.O.T.C. After graduation he spent a month in Holland with his father's relatives. He received his M. B. A. from C.C.N.Y. a year later.
He was active in Saint James' Church on Madison Avenue, and was an Eagle Boy Scout.
He was an accomplished pianist.
He was a member of the Royal Arcanum. (www.royalarcanum.com)
He was a Vice President in the Trust Department of the Irving Trust Company, a major bank that has since become part of the Bank of New York.
In 1937 he married Nancy Jean McKee. They had one child, Susan Jane, born in 1941.
After graduation from college he continued to serve in the Army Reserves, and was called to active duty in June, 1941, six months before Pearl Harbor.
He was assigned to the Thirty Third Fighter Group of the Army Air Corps and was stationed at Mitchel Field, where he was promoted to Major. The group
was moved to Philadelphia, and later was part of the 10,000-man invasion of North Africa November 9-11, 1942. He served under Col. William Momyer (now
General, Ret.) as the ground officer in charge of the train that took the support men and equipment from Morocco to Tunisia. (See history of the 33rd:
He was killed at dawn on January 11, 1943 in Thelepte, Tunisia by German strafing and is buried in the military cemetery in Carthage.
His mother died thirty hours earlier, in New York City.