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Two World War II Sussex-Templeton veterans

It was hard scabble scrabble for these two Sussex-Templeton urchins in the early 1930s. The one on the left is Richard "Austy" Treloar current Sussex resident of nearly 80 years while the one on the right is the late David Johns.

These two neighbors and also relatives would eventually go through Sussex Main Street Grade School and the two-year Sussex High School. Both were outstanding athletes at the high school and then went on to play many years for the Sussex Land O'Lakes baseball teams of the late 1930s and early 1940s.

They would both enter the service of the United States Army and serve in the Pacific war.

On discharge in 1946 both would be charter members of the Sussex Horne Mudlitz Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6377.

At the same time, Sussex was into honoring its returning armed forces veterans and a stone monument was erected ahead of the then-Sussex Village Hall; the Lannon stone WPA built Sussex Community Hall. On this monument 56 names were inscribed in four rows of 14 names each. Today, less than a handful of those people are alive and prominent among the living is Austy Treloar now enjoying retirement in his Elmwood Avenue home. Recently, in an interview Treloar mentioned that he had bought the lot that holds his home in 1951 just as the Marx Brothers subdivision was beginning. It took him two years to get a basement and house up that was only partly finished. His cost when he and his wife Mary moved in was $6,000.

Austy was born in the greater Iron Ridge area in 1920 and today he is 89 with his 90th birthday on Dec. 9.

The depression of the 1920s and the closing down of the iron mine near Iron Ridge caused his family to move to Brown Deer for a short period of time while his father was employed as a horse keeper. However, the Treloar family hit a depression bottom and they had a 1930-31 move to Sussex-Templeton. They lived hand to mouth getting what jobs that would pay the $7 a month home rental and put food on the table.

Austy Treloar, despite the hardships of the Great Depression thrived at the Sussex Main Street grade school and later at the two-year high school as he took part in class plays and played football, baseball and basketball. However, after the two years of high school he had to leave school and get a job to help support his parents and siblings.

Meanwhile, Dave Johns, born William David Johns, was just a trifle younger than Austy being born in 1922. He was part of the seven-children family of Samuel Johns and wife Caroline "Gladys" Treloar, an older sister of Austy's. David Johns was the first born followed by Stanley, Doug, Marvis, Gladys, Doris and Gloria.

Now as youngsters Austy and Dave were great friends and also relatives and teammates. They later became soldiers together in the Army during World War II followed by being VFW members and Sussex Fire Department members with a combined 27 years of service - Johns has 12 and Treloar 15.

Johns served in the Medical Corps out of Barns General Hospital in Vancouver, Wash., and then shipped out as a member of the medical staff on a Pacific hospital ship.

Austy was in anti aircraft and got to New Guinea, Philippines, and was in on the surrender at Tokyo Bay on Sept. 2, 1945, being among the very first to land on Japanese soil.

Unfortunately David Johns, who married a Templeton girl, Doris Beier, died at a rather young age of 58 on Dec. 25, 1950. Dave and Doris had two sons, Ronald and Bruce.

Doris Beier was a 1936 graduate of Sussex High School and was a premier girls athlete and an outstanding swimmer learning to swim in the Sussex quarry behind Mammoth Spring Canning Co. For many years, she was involved in life guarding and swimming instructions at the quarry. After the death of Davide she lingered in Sussex and then moved to Ocala, Fla., in 1982 and is now deceased.

More on one of the few last Sussex-area WWII veterans, Richard Austin Treloar in a future Retrospect.


A tribute to our Sussex-Lisbon area veterans

In a tribute to Veterans Day, this week's Retrospect shares two stories of area residents, Austin Treloar, a World War II veteran and World War II U.S. Navy nurse Lt. Ruth Weaver Tempero.

Austin Treloar

Richard Austin Treloar, aka Austie, will turn 90 years old on Dec. 9. He has been a resident of Sussex for nearly 80 years and has lived in his Elmwood Avenue home since 1953.

In 1946, Sussex built a stone monument for the 54 men and women who served in World War II. Today, less than a handful is alive and all are in their 80s and 90s. Treloar is planning to attend the annual Templeton Middle School Veteran's Day celebration planned for the morning of Nov. 5. At the conclusion of the celebration, veterans will meet for coffee and refreshments and there will be a chance to visit with Treloar about his duties in the South Pacific and Philippine Islands as an anti-aircraft quad 50-piece unit that was set up to invade Japan.

Treloar was born of English immigrant parents at Neda, Wis., near Iron Ridge. His father was William Fowler Treloar and mother, Susan Jane. His father worked in the Mayville-area iron mines and he had one brother and three sisters that were all older than him. It was a good time for him until the Great Depression hit. His father was laid off and got a job in Brown Deer working for a Globe Union executive who had horses.

However, as the Depression intensified, his father lost his Brown Deer horse care job and they moved to Sussex in 1930. His father by this time was not well and could do little work. His mother held odd jobs with the only lasting one being part of the Mammoth Springs Canning Company canning season work crew. With what little money they had, they had trouble paying the $7 per month house rental, but they managed.

Treloar went through Sussex Main Street School and the two-year Sussex High School graduating in 1936 at age 16. Even in his youth, preceding graduating at 16, he had been farmed out to Lisbon farmers for room and board. He got side jobs of putting up shucks of corn, hoeing sugar beets and working for Ed Brown's threshing rig. Any money he earned he turned over to his mother who was taking care of her invalid husband.

Dec. 7, 1941, came along. Treloar's memories of it were it was sunny and cool in Sussex-Templeton.

"I was walking down to Beier's Garage in Templeton. It was right after lunch and the guys in the garage told me that the Japanese had attacked Pearl Harbor which was someplace in Hawaii.

"It was a big topic of conversation," said Treloar. "We all figured that we would go in service. It was not long after that I was in Oconomowoc to sign up (for the draft). I was given a number, 3A, for one year, because I was the sole support for my mother and invalid father. My mother was into her 60s and not well."

Treloar's classification changed June 15, 1943. John Kraemer, the big wheel at the Mammoth Spring Canning Co. took a carload of Sussex-drafted youth to Oconomowoc including his son, Jim Kraemer, plus Chuck Dable, Ray Wegner, Harvey Lang, Norm Headly and Treloar and they were off to basic training and war.

Treloar went to Fort Sheridan and then took a train ride to Holen, Texas, 100 miles south of Houston. He quickly went through basic and then was off to Indio, Calif., for anti-aircraft training with a .30-caliber and then later with a .50-caliber quad gun. Then it was up to Vancouver, Wash., with the 82nd Antiaircraft Artillery Battalion Unit.

Initially, Treloar was paid $37 per month of which he got $13, and the rest was an allotment sent to his mother in Sussex. Now with $13, he would have to pay his $6 life insurance, leaving him with $7 for the rest of the month. As Treloar went up in rank he eventually earned $83 per month but he still only got $13 per month for the two-plus years he served.

After some snafus, he was shipped out to the South Pacific from Long Beach, Calif., first landing in New Guinea. He sailed on the slow boat to Finschhafen and then to Hollandia making a stop at New Britain. Then it was up to the Philippines. His ship was the first one to land at Manila after the Luzon invasion. Treloar's group was attached to the 1st Calvary to take care of problems for quad 50s that were needed as they worked south to Bataan.

Their last assignment in the Philippines was to be back at the Lipa Air Strip. Then it was to link up in the Philippines to go forward to the invasion of Japan. His taskforce would land at one of the four main islands of Japan, Kyushu.

It was expected that in Treloar's unit there would be a "90 percent kill-wounded rate in Kyushu" for the U.S. invading units. However, two atomic bombs were dropped. Asked what he thought of the atomic bombs Treloar said, "It was them or me. I think it saved a lot of lives, mine included. It also saved a lot of Japanese lives in the long run."

Now it was on to surrender. Treloar landed Sept. 2 at Yokohoma in Tokyo Bay a minute after the peace treaty was signed and his units acted as the initial occupying soldiers. In December of 1945 Treloar left Japan. His boat took 15 days to go over the Pacific Ocean to Takoma, Wash.

He was immediately sent to Camp McCoy, Wis., where he was discharged on Jan. 15, 1946, after two years, one month and 29 days in service.

Back in Sussex he got a 42-year job as a truck driver for Halquist, built a home on Elmwood Avenue, married Mary Krause, had two daughters, was a charter member of the Sussex VFW and joined the Sussex Fire Department. A big achievement for Treloar was to be on the Sussex Park Acquisition Committee in 1958 when Sussex bought the land that now includes Village Park for a little more than $36,000.

Meanwhile his father had died in 1944 and his mother would die in 1957, they are buried at St. James/Rose Hill Cemetery. He still has a problem from his time in service as he contracted malaria in the South Pacific. Just this past week he had to get a treatment for it which included a transfusion of two pints of blood.

Richard Austin Treloar 05/18/11

Richard Austin Treloar, "Austy" to his friends, died on Wednesday, May 11, at age 90. He is one of 56 area residents commemorated World War II service on the Sussex WWII monument at Sussex Village Hall.

Born in the Neda, Iron Ridge area of Wisconsin on Dec. 9, 1920, he moved to Sussex in 1930 with his family during the Great Depression. His father, John, was sick and could not work later dying in 1941 and his mother, Susan, was frail and could only take on limited season work at the Mammoth Spring Canning Company. Therefore, Treloar became the sole supporter for his family at a young age.

He graduated from Sussex Main Street School with good grades despite being held back a class because of family's frequent moving during his early childhood years which set his education back a bit. He graduated from the two-year Sussex high school in 1938 at age 17. He was a sports star in football, baseball and basketball later playing for the Sussex Land O'Lakes baseball team.

Prior to his WWII service, he worked as a section hand for the Soo Line Railroad (today the Wisconsin Central) in the Sussex-Templeton depot.

Inducted into service in 1943, he became a member of the 82nd Anti Aircraft Battalion that was attached to the 1st Cavalry that was part of the retaking of the Philippine Islands. He rose in rank to Staff Sergeant and was set to be part of the invasion of Japan that predicted 90 percent of his group would perish. He was among the first soldiers to land on Japanese soil on Sept. 2. However, the atomic bomb was dropped and Japan surrendered. His discharge was in January of 1946.

After his service, Treloar picked up a job as a truck driver hauling stone for Halquist quarry; a position he held for 42 years.

In late 1947, he had a whirlwind, two-month courtship with Mary Krause that led to their marriage on Dec. 25, 1947 at the Sussex Methodist Church. The couple originally met in the former Krueger's Inn which today is Tailgator's Sports Bar. They had two daughters, Darlene and Joan Ann.

Treloar was a charter member of the Sussex VFW Post later becoming a lifetime member. He was also a member of the Sussex Ashlar Lodge. He served on the 1958 Sussex Park Acquisition Committee which bought acquired 78 acres of land for Sussex Village Park at a price of $36,000. He later served on the Sussex Park Board.

Austy and Mary Treloar were married for 61 years before her death on Feb. 7, 2009. He lived on in their Elmwood Avenue home until this past March when his health required that he move to Three Pillars retirement community in Dousman.

Memorial services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 21 at Rosehill Cemetery on Highway 74

Ruth Weaver Tempero

I will share the story of the only woman from the Town of Lisbon who served in the U.S. Armed Forces in World War II, U.S. Navy nurse Lt. Ruth Weaver Tempero. She was very proud of her full name, especially, the Weaver part.

Today one can find her burial spot in the shaded northeast corner of God's Acre Cemetery attached to St. Alban's Episcopal Church in downtown Sussex. There is no big gravestone over her hidden gravesite between monstrous pine trees.

Ruth Weaver Tempero (1910-1992) goes back to the coming of the mighty Weaver family to Lisbon in 1836 and onward. James Weaver (1800-1886) and his wife, Elizabeth Fielder Weaver had 16 children, six in Sussex, England, four more in western New York state and then six more in the Town of Lisbon. Their first-born in Lisbon was on Nov. 24, 1837, a daughter named Ruth Weaver. She would live only eight months and died July 24, 1837. She was buried in the area where today one finds the Halquist Quarry (north) Stony Park and the adjacent subdivision. The gravesite has been lost. Ruth Weaver (1836-1837) would be the grand aunt of Ruth Weaver Tempero when she was born a mile west near the intersection of today's Highway 164 and Lisbon Road (Sussex Corporate Center) to Charles Tempero and his wife, Ada Weaver.

Thus, James Weaver, considered to be "The Father of Sussex-Lisbon", was the great-grandfather of the future Lt. Ruth Weaver Tempero and her grandfather was Alfred S. Weaver. This 12th child of James Weaver became a sergeant in Company B of the Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry regiment that fought in the trans Mississippi part of the Civil War. He was the company flag-bearer. Notable battles for Alfred were the campaign for Vicksburg, a whole series of encounters in Arkansas, the Battles of Helena and Mobile. He ended up in the post war garrisons in Texas.

When he came back to Lisbon, he married Sarah Ann Howard in the very first wedding performed in the then-new stone St. Alban Church in Sussex on Dec. 19, 1866. They had two daughters, Allie and Ada. Alfred Weaver had a farm where H&H Auto on Waukesha Avenue/Highway 74 is today. A Pauline Haass Library book labeled "Weaver Civil War" contains a diary of his Civil War duty in 1862-65.

Getting back to Ruth Weaver Tempero. She was one of the three daughters of Charles and Ada Tempero. All three attended the Lisbon Plank Road one-room school that is today a company museum on the Halquist Stone grounds.

Ruth was a farm girl that had a herd of Guernsey cows. There were also sheep, chickens and pigs on the 160-acre spread.

She was a very smart girl at Lisbon Plank School graduating in 1924 five years before Halquist started in 1929. Ruth went on to Waukesha High graduating in 1928.

She then entered the nursing program at St. Luke's in Chicago graduating as a registered nurse in 1932. She had various nursing jobs including being a teaching nurse but as World War II developed, she volunteered to join the U.S. Navy signing up in late 1942.

There was a parting patriotic send-off on Nov. 14, 1942, at the Guild Hall of St. Alban's. Thirty-one people signed a send-off card.

She was immediately named an Ensign and shortly later as a Lieutenant Junior Grade and by discharge she was a Lieutenant which corresponds to a Captain in the U.S. Army ranking. By December 1942, she was writing letters from Guadalcanal. Of particular interest was one sent Dec. 23, 1942, from Guadalcanal that gave her address as Naval Nursing Corp. c/o Mobile Hospital Unit #5, Fleet P.Q. San Francisco, CA. She could not tell where she was at and she was limited to two pages and was censored.

The letterhead showed a South Pacific atoll with battleships on one side and airplanes on the other. He heading sentence started with, "Somewhere in the South Pacific." She tells of working 12-hour shifts and her upcoming two weeks of special nighttime shifts. She mentions a "George" and her were going to a Christmas party. She talked about that it was "queer" that she was spending time with palm trees in December with no decorated fir trees.

Ruth was older and more experienced than most of U.S. Navy nurses. She as 32-years-old when she got to Guadalcanal and according to her letters, she would take on command positions over the ranks of other nurses first at Guadalcanal and then later as she went up to the islands.

After the Japan surrender Sept. 1, 1945, she quickly came back to the U.S. and Lisbon. She found a nursing job at St. Mary's Hospital in Milwaukee where she lived in an apartment but she always made it back to Lisbon which she called home.

She was a staunch member of St. Alban's and assisted in many of the church happenings and functions. In 1972, she retired at age 62 moving to St. John's Towers in Milwaukee. She also did a lot of volunteer work in Milwaukee and St. Alban's. She co-wrote the history of St. Alban's.

She died Jan. 22, 1992, and Rev. Glenn Derby officiated at her funeral in a mini snow storm with burial at St. Alban's. Soon after her burial a simple U.S. Armed Services veteran standard white marble gravestone arrived at St. Alban's with her name, war unit and life date on it. The Sussex Lisbon Area Historical Society has several items from her life including many pictures and some letters.

Veterans ceremony

All veterans are encouraged to attend Templeton Middle School's 10th annual Veterans' Day Program on Nov. 5. The event is slated to begin at 8:30 a.m., and US Marine Corps MAJ (Ret.) Jeff Anderson will provide the Veterans' Address. Anderson, who deployed in support of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in the Middle East and Operation Restore Hope in Somalia, will join the ceremonial color guard from the Marine Recruitment Office in Brookfield as they post and retire the national colors. The color guard will also lay wreaths to honor prisoners of war and soldiers missing in action.Guest veterans who attend the program will be individually introduced and honored for their military service, and the Templeton music program will provide renditions of patriotic songs. The winning entrant in Templeton's Patriotic Essay Contest will also read his or her essay at the event. Templeton music teacher Jaye Mier is coordinating a video production that will feature photos of military personnel and veterans related to students at the school.Upon the conclusion of the program, veterans will be invited to participate in a small reception. Veterans interested in attending the event should contact the school at (262) 246-6477.The school is located at N59 W22490 Silver Spring Drive, Sussex.


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