RICHARD M. THROCKMORTON was elected and sworn in as National
Commander, AMERICAN EX-PRISONERS OF WAR at the 51st National
Convention in Baton Rouge, LA on October 24, 1998.
Richard was born on August 17, 1921 in Central City, NE to parents in
the restaurant and bakery business who also farmed for a few years.
While growing up, he lived in a number of different towns in Nebraska
and Iowa, graduating from high school in Tabor, IA, and finished his
college training at Iowa State University, Ames, IA, following the
He mobilized with the Iowa National Guard in Red Oak, IA on February
10, 1941 and served in the famous 34th Infantry Division, starting
with Company M, 168th Infantry and finished in the Intelligence
Section of Headquarters Company. In January 1942 he was shipped to
Europe for additional training including Commando Training in
preparation for the invasion of North Africa. He was among the troops
that went ashore at Algiers, North Africa. His unit was involved in
three major battles in Tunisia, N.A., and he was captured by Rommel at
Faid Pass on February 17, 1943.
He was flown to Palermo, Sicily and on to Capua, Italy, and was
shipped by boxcars to Stalag VII-A, Mooseburg, Germany and then on to
Stalag III-B, Frankfurt on the Oder. He was then sent to Arbeits
Kommando US. #1, Spremberg, Germany for the better part of two years.
On February 10, 1945 he was forced on what is called “The Black
Bread March”, marching nearly 500 miles across Germany. During the
march he nearly died from malnutrition. He ended up in Stalag XI-A,
Altengrabow, Germany from which the American Fifth Armored Division
liberated him on Friday, April 13, 1945.
After returning to the States he was sent to Jefferson Barracks, MO
where he received his discharge on August 3, 1945. When the National
Guard reorganized in 1946, Richard re-enlisted for another four years
and was immediately promoted to Master Sergeant. During his military
service he earned and received the Bronze Star, Prisoner of War Medal,
Good Conduct Medal, American Defense Medal, American Campaign Medal,
European-African-Middle East Campaign Medal, with three Bronze Stars
and one Arrowhead, World War II Victory Medal, and the Combat Infantry
On November 30, 1940 he married Aletha Jeanne Huitt, and they have
four children, nineteen grandchildren, and five great-grandchildren.
Their oldest son, Terry, graduated in 1965 from West Point and is
retired from the Army. Their second son, Dick, Jr., was also in the
Army. One grandson is a graduate from V.M.I. and is an officer in the
Virginia National Guard, and another is in the Marine Reserves.
Richard’s work history includes five years with the Fuller Brush
Co., eight years with the Goodyear Co., seven years with Firestone
Co., three years with I.D.S. Investments, and 23 years with the
Peerless Chain Co., Winona, MN. He was always in sales, where he
excelled and which he truly loved.
Commander Throckmorton’s goal for his tenure as National Commander
is to continue helping AX-POWs in obtaining their benefits for their
courageous service to this great country.
PNC Throckmorton passed away on January 24, 2007.