Hugh Z. Reynolds passed away September 4, 2019 in Ennis. He was born Dec. 21, 1919, in Blooming Prairie, Minnesota. He attended school in the Judith Gap, Big Timber, Melville and Harlowton areas.
He worked on ranches, trapped and logged in the Melville area until entering the U.S. Army on Sept. 16, 1940 in Harlowton. He trained at Fort Lewis until shipping overseas on March 19, 1942, with Company D of the Montana 163d Regiment of the 41st Infantry Division, the first unit sent overseas after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. Hugh was the last survivor of the group of 65 men from Harlowton that went to confront the Imperial Japanese Army in the islands of the South Pacific.
He fought in the first successful campaign against Japanese ground forces at Sanananda in Papua, New Guinea in Jan. 1943 and again in northwest Dutch New Guinea in early 1944, making four combat beach landings before being wounded on Biak Island on the northwest tip of New Guinea in June 1944.
After more than five years of service during World War II, he returned to Harlowton to work, and helped re-establish the local National Guard unit and served until retiring as a Major with 28.5 years of service.
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He married June Hereim on June 21, 1947, and three boys were born to this union. He also spent many years in the bar business and metal building business.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife June; three brothers, Raymond, Clifford and Dale and sisters, Mildred Ledger and Gertrude Harroun. Earlier this year he also lost his soul mate, Lydia Peterson. He is survived by his three sons Gary (Debbie), Darwin (Leslie), and Rick (Trina) and five grandchildren.
Cremation has taken place. A short military service will be held at Perkins Funeral Home in Harlowton, MT on Oct. 5, 2019, at 2 p.m. with a reception following at the Moose Lodge. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to the Upper Musselshell Veteran’s Memorial or the Upper Musselshell Museum in Harlowton.
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