Willard Krupsky, 84, Minot, died Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, in a Minot hospital.
Willard was born Aug. 28, 1929, to George and Ida (Semchenko) Krupsky, on the family farm in McLean County, south of Butte. He attended rural school in Aurena Township and Butte High School.
In 1946, Willard enlisted in the Army at age 17. He completed his basic training at Fort Bragg in North Carolina and was called to duty in Germany in 1947, where he was part of the U.S. Constabulary (D troop 6th constabulary squadron) that patrolled the East-West borders of the American sectors in West Germany during the Cold War. He was later assigned to tank training in Germany and honorably discharged in 1948.
Willard re-enlisted during the Korean War in 1950, serving as a member of Co. B, 70th Heavy Tank Battalion, First Calvary Division. He was involved in the battle to retake Seoul and wounded by shrapnel. He received two Purple Heart Awards for his injuries in combat. Willard completed his military career with more service in Germany and was honorably discharged in 1954 after six years and eight months of service to his country.
Willard returned to North Dakota following a couple years of employment with Louisville-Nashville Railroad in Kentucky. He started with the SooLine and Great Northern Railroad systems. He also logged time for the Southern Pacific Railroad in California in the early 1960s. Willard finished his career with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad (formerly The Great Northern Railroad), when he retired as a conductor on June 15, 1993, totaling 38 years of service.
He was a member of the American Legion of Butte and Minot, the Veterans of Foreign Ward, AMVETS and Eagles Auxiliary, all of Minot. He was a life member of the Korean War Veterans Association, recipient of the Graybeards publication and a member of the United Transportation Union.
Willard loved to socialize with friends and was often found at the New Image Barbershop, enjoying coffee and conversation on a daily basis. He will be missed by all who shared in his life.
Willard's surviving family includes: his children, Sal Raymond (Sonia) Francis, St. Louis, and Melanie O'Connor, Seattle; grandchildren, Eric Francis, Alyssa Francis and Kelsey Long; sisters, Shirley (Vernon) Furgason, Sunnyvale, Calif., Carrol (Phil) Perry, Lewistown, Mont., Valerie Krupsky, Glendale, Calif., Shelley Harstad, Minot, and Ardis Harsche, of Jerome, Ariz.; brother, Gordon Krupsky, Aurora, Ill.; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
Funeral service: Today, Dec. 13, 2013, at 10 a.m., at Thomas Family Funeral Home, Minot.
Interment: Rosehill Memorial Park, Minot.
Visitation was Thursday, Dec. 12, from 2 p.m. until 7 p.m., at the funeral home.
Those wanting to sign the online memorial register or share memories and condolences are invited to use the expressions of sympathy section at (www.thomasfamilyfuneralhome.com).