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Howard Kratzke Collection

Howard Kratzke Biography

Howard Leonard Kratzke was born on January 20, 1917.  He was one of five children, the youngest son, of Julius Kratzke and Christina Schmidt.  He spent his boyhood and teenage years at the family home at 42 Schuele Street, on Buffalo’s east side.

He left home after his junior year of high school to join the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). During his three years of service in the CCC, he rose through the ranks to the grade of Sergeant.  It was here, acting as chief sawyer, that he received a Letter of Commendation from Brigadier General George Marshall for his work in the forests of Oregon and Washington. 

After his CCC service, Howard returned to Buffalo to work at National Analine Corporation prior to entering the Army in May of 1941.  During the war, he served as a construction foreman with the 343rd Engineers and saw service in Morocco, Central Europe, Germany, Italy, Sicily, Southern France and Tunisia.  He earned the American Defense Service Medal, European, African and Middle Eastern service medals, and a Good Conduct medal.

When WWII ended, Howard once again held a position at National Analine until he married Madeline Termini in 1947.  He then took a job at Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation, where he worked until shortly before he died.  He passed away on August 21, 1970 at the age of 53 years old. 

-Leonard Kratzke, son


Howard Kratzke's diaries, photographs and other documents were digitized in 2010 by the MFRHC and are availabe with the assistance of Scott Black, lecturer at Buffalo State College and the donation of the material by Leonard and Silvia Kratzke

*Currently all the diaries are in their scanned images format. There is an ongoing project to translate these diaries into more legible word documents.


Click here for the collection index.

Personal Documents

Appointments & Commendations

Commendation from Mark W. Clark - May 1944
Corporal Appointment - 9-27-41
Sergeant Appointment - 12-19-41
Staff Sergeant Appointment - 4-9-42


Honorable Discharge Certificate
Letter from G.C. Marshall -June 4, 1938
Letter from Mark W. Clark - 11-10-43
Letter from Reemployment Committee - 8-27-45
Letter of Farewell - 5-29-45
Separation Record

Poetry & Newspaper Articles

At the Fort
Birth #1
Birth #2
Bouqet for a Bride
Bridge Newspaper Article
The Engineers Lament


Catacombs of Palermo
City of Palermo







Visit us in Classroom Building C222



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