Harvey M. Shaner Jr. was born on December 9, 1925 to Harvey and Carrie (Schneck) Shaner of Pottstown Landing, Pennsylvania. Harvey Jr. was the younger of two children. Harvey attended the North Coventry High school but left in his senior year to enlist in the Army in March, 1944.
Harvey received training at Camp Blanding, Florida and Camp Shelby, Mississippi. He was assigned to the 261st Infantry Regiment, 65th Infantry Division. The newly formed and trained division embarked for the European Theater of Operations in January 1945.
Harvey’s division debarked in Le Harve, France, and was assigned to General Patton’s Third Army. The 65th division was transported to the Belgium/ German border and entered combat in Saarlautern area in southwest Germany. They relieved the 26th division at the bridgehead on the Saar River in March. After defeating the enemy, they crossed the river and fought their way to the Rhine River, crossing it on March 29-30th. The 65th division continued advancing under heavy combat, notably the Battle at Struth on April 7th, Battle for Neumarkt, April 20-22, and crossing the Danube to take Regensburg area, April 25-26.
Private First Class Harvey M. Shaner, Jr. was killed in action on April 26, 1945 in Kapfelberg, Germany. His parents first received a telegram that Harvey was missing in action, soon followed by a telegram in May that their son was killed in action. Harvey was buried in a local military cemetery, and a memorial service was held in his hometown a year after his death.
In 1948, at the request of his family, Harvey’s remains were returned for burial in his home country. A private family service was held on December 12, 1948 at The Pottstown West End cemetery.
Harvey’s brother, Warren also served during the war in the Navy.