35th Infantry (Cacti) Regiment Association

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  CPL John A. Keller    In memory of our fallen brother

"We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he to-day that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother"

Cannon Company
35th Infantry Regiment
World War II

"Not For Fame or Reward
Not For Place or For Rank
But In Simple Obedience To
Duty as They Understood It"

The 35th Infantry Regiment Association salutes our fallen brother, CPL John A. Keller, 33171476, who died in the service of his country on February 7th, 1945 in Luzon. The cause of death was listed as KIA. At the time of his death John was 27 years of age. He was from Coplay, Pennsylvania.

The decorations earned by CPL John A. Keller include: the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, the Asiatic-Pacific Service Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal.

John A. Keller was born on January 13, 1918 in Coplay, Pennsylvania to George and Mary Keller who immigrated from Moschendorf, Austria-Hungary in 1912. He was one of 6 children. His mother died on August 6, 1940 at Sacred Heart Hospital in Allentown, Pennsylvania of stomach cancer. His father remarried on May 13, 1941. John enlisted on March 3, 1942 for five years at Fort George G. Meade in Maryland. His brothers, George (3rd Marine Division, my grandfather), Joseph (Marine Corps) and Anthony (Army) survived the war as did his sisters Hilda and Mary. His service in the unit is proudly displayed under his name on the family tombstone.

According to Kenneth Jager who served with him "Slim" Brotherson was serving as a tank driver that day and was killed along with Sgt Clarence Roberts; Cpl. John A. Keller; and PFC Roy Neary when their tank received a direct hit in a skirmish with a Japanese tank.

A PFC "Linley" was WIA and crew members Robert Toon and Floyd Sanner successfully backed the tank to safety and both were awarded the Silver Star.

The photo below is of the M7 Tank (click to enlarge) Robert Toon is standing in front of tank. Photo supplied by Brian Toon.


Saint Peters Catholic Cemetery


Lehigh County

Pennsylvania, USA