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Fred R Grassman

War: World War II
Parent/Wife: Frederick
City: Marshfield
Birth Date: 7 May 1927
Death Date: 11 Dec 1944
How Died: Kia
Where Died: Pacific
Where Buried:
Rank: S2C
Branch: Navy

Kia=Killed in Action
Dow=Died of Wounds
Dod=Died of Disease
Mia=Missing in Action


Frederick Grassman

Frederick Grassman was born in Ladysmith on May 7, 1927. He lived with his parents Mr. and Mrs. Frederick William Grassman, five sisters, and two brothers. He enlisted in the Navy on May 12, 1944, and in September he began active duty. Roughly three months later, he was reported missing in action aboard the U.S.S. Reid. The U.S.S. Reid was attacked by two kamikaze planes and sunk. For this reason, Fred Grassman was determined to be dead.

After enlisting in the Navy on May 12, 1944, Frederick received training at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. There he completed his boot training and then he spent a nine day leave with his parents and siblings in July. After that he was sent to Shoemaker, California, and subsequently Treasure Island, California. In September he began active duty.

In the Navy, Fredrick was an S2C. An S2C is a naval reactor used by the United States. S2Cs generate electricity and provide propulsion on warships. S stands for submarine propulsion, 2 stands for second generation core, and C stands for combustion engineering.

On December 11, 1944, the U.S.S. Reid was attacked by two kamikaze planes and sunk. Kamikaze planes are also known as suicide planes. They attack their enemy by crashing into them using their plane. They were also often loaded with explosives for a better impact. Not only do the pilots kill themselves, but they also eliminate whomever they hit. This is how they sunk the U.S.S.Reid.

Fredrick Grassman was enlisted in the navy during WW2. His courage and the courage of his associates in combat are best described in the poem “The Last Petal” by Carolann S. Wallace.
Perfect as a rose petal
Watch as it endures
The blooms fight for their life
As they are surrounded by knives
For what they know best
Is the blossom of their hearts
They live in the moment they open
Hopes to achieve, reside in their minds.

At age 17 Fredrick was killed when his ship was attacked by two kamikaze planes. His memory will be held by all who loved him. He gave his life to his country and allowed America to remain the beautiful country we have today.

Emily Grassl, Student
Marshfield Junior High


Frederick Robert Grassman

“We deeply regret to inform you that a careful review of all facts available relating to the disappearance of your son, Frederick Robert Grassman, fireman, second class, USNR, previously reported missing, leads to the conclusion that there is no hope for his survival and that he lost his life as a result of enemy action on December 11, 1944, while in the service of his country,” was the telegram Mr. and Mrs. William Grassman received the week of January 27, 1945, from the Navy Department.

On May 7, 1927, Frederick was born in Ladysmith, Wisconsin. His parents were Mr. and Mrs. William Grassman; he had five sisters and two brothers. He attended Neillsville and Marshfield High School.

At the age of 17, right after finishing high school, Frederick decided to enlist in the Navy. On May 12, 1944, he enlisted. He received his training at the Great Lakes Naval Center. He finished his training in July, and had a nine day leave with his parents. He was then sent to Shoemaker, California, and also Treasure Island, California. In September, 1944, Frederick began active duty on the U.S.S. Reid

In early December, 1944, Mrs. Grassman received a letter from her son. On January 1, 1945, Mr. and Mrs. Grassman received a telegram informing them that their son was missing in action. Later that month the family received another telegram from the Navy Department informing them that their son was killed in action on December 11, 1944. He was killed while serving with the U.S. Navy on the Pacific in World War II.

Frederick was memorialized and buried at the Manila American Cemetery, Fort Bonifacio, Manila, Philippines. He was ranked a Fireman, Second Class, and received the Purple Heart. His ID number was 3068329.

Frederick was survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. William Grassman; his sisters, Mrs. Steve Orgish, Mrs. Stewart Reainey, Mrs. Ray Schuler, Mrs. Alfred Holt, Carol Grassman, and Donna Grassman; and his brothers, Gordon Grassman and Jim Grassman.

After only serving seven months in the Navy, Frederick lost his life at the age of 17, dying a hero in service to our country.

Written by: Cassie Yustus, East Junior High School


News Articles

Grassman Declaration
Grassman Missing


  Honoring Our Wood County War Dead