Fred Kalinchuk (November 21, 1896–September 28, 1994)

By Kenneth Holliday

Early Life: Birth in Russia and Immigration to the United States

Fred O. Kalinchuk was born in Russia on November 21, 1896. 1 Little is known about his early years, but it appears that his parents were Joseph Kalinchuk and Julia Luk, who were also Russian. 2 Kalinchuk immigrated to the United States on April 12, 1913. 3 He probably lived with his family in Cleveland, Ohio after immigrating to the United States because he enlisted in the Army in Cleveland and also returned to the city after his service. 4

Service: Naturalization and Fighting in the Oise-Aisne Offensive during World War I

Kalinchuck Petition for Naturalization

Kalinchuk enlisted in the US Army in Cleveland, Ohio on May 28, 1918. 5 It is important to note that Kalinchuk joined the US Army without yet being a US citizen. Less than two months after enlisting, Kalinchuk had filed a Petition for Naturalization. 6 He gained US citizenship on July 9, 1918 after appearing in front of the US District Court in the Northern District of Georgia, as seen on his Petition for Naturalization. 7 At the time, Kalinchuk was living at Camp Gordon, Georgia. 8 It was common for soldiers to apply for naturalization while in the service; after America’s entrance into World War I the naturalization process for immigrants was substantially shortened and made easier. 9 In order to encourage military service, the US government waived the application fees and removed the declaration of intention and five-year residency requirements for members of the US armed forces. 10 As a result, about 200,000 immigrants who served in the military applied for and became US citizens. 11

Upon enlisting in the Army, Kalinchuk joined the 21st Company, 2nd Infantry Replacement and Training Regiment at Camp Gordon, Georgia until July 13, 1918. 12 From there, he joined the Camp Gordon Replacement Draft unit until August 10, 1918. 13 After spending a two-day assignment with Company A, 163rd Infantry Regiment, he joined Company B, 109th Infantry Regiment on August 13, 1918. 14 The 109th Infantry Regiment was organized under the Army’s 28th Division. 15 It was in this unit that Kalinchuk served in the Oise-Aisne offensive. 16

After failed German offensives in early 1918, the Allies, with their “constantly increasing American forces,” pushed the German Army into a defensive role. 17 In the final moments of the war, the Allied forces launched a series of offensives. 18 The US 28th Division, along with the 77th and 32nd Division, stayed along French lines according to French General Foch’s wishes. 19 On August 18, 1918 the French launched the Oise-Aisne offensive, in which Kalinchuk played a part. 20 After successful attacks by French and other American divisions, the US 28th Division advanced in pursuit of retreating German forces on September 4, 1918 near the Aisne River, and continued to attack German troops for several days. 21 Allied troops gained ground as a result of this offensive, and the 28th Division was relieved on September 8, 1918. 22 The unit’s success was not without cost, however; the 28th Division suffered 6,700 casualties including Kalinchuk. 23

Quad-City Times Article

Kalinchuk was wounded in action, degree undetermined, on September 7, 1918. 24 He was first reported missing in action in a “Roll of Honor” list that appears to have circulated to newspapers throughout the country and was printed in some form in the Oregon Daily Journal, Sandusky Star-Journal, Daily Argus-Leader, and Quad-City Times, seen here, on November 8, 1918, as well as in the Washington Post and Detroit Free Press on November 9, 1918. 25 Not until November 24 did the Oregon Daily Journal and the Sunday Oregonian report that Kalinchuk was wounded in action. 26 Considering that the Oise-Aisne offensive included the participation of 310,000 Americans, 67,000 of whom became casualties, confusion about the status of Kalinchuk is understandable. 27 The term “missing in action” was meant to be a temporary classification, so soldiers such as Kalinchuk often had their status changed to “killed in action (KIA), wounded in action (WIA), or prisoners of war (POW)” later on, after they were accounted for. 28 The 28th Division’s momentum continued after the Oise-Aisne offensive as it prepared for the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, which began on September 26, 1918, and this likely also contributed to the confusion surrounding Kalinchuk’s status. 29

After being wounded, Kalinchuk was reassigned to the Fourth Corps Military Police Company on September 27, 1918 until he rejoined Company B, 109th Infantry Regiment on March 13, 1919. 30 There, he finished the remainder of his service. 31 He was honorably discharged on May 23, 1919. 32 Kalinchuk had reached the rank of Private First Class, had served in the American Expeditionary Force from July 22, 1918 to May 3, 1919, and had participated in the Oise-Aisne and the Meuse-Argonne offensives. 33 Kalinchuk was also awarded the Purple Heart for the wounds he received during the war. 34 After his service abroad he returned to America in May 1919 as a young, combat-seasoned Veteran who had only petitioned for US citizenship less than a year before. 35

Post-Service: Work as a Patternmaker, Marriage, and Son’s Service

Upon his return to Cleveland, Ohio, Kalinchuk worked as a patternmaker, possibly first in an apparel company and later in the woodworking industry. 36 On August 2, 1921 he married Stefania Tomcany. 37 Tomcany, born in Austria in 1901, had also immigrated to the United States. 38 Kalinchuk and Tomcany’s backgrounds reflect the importance of migration to America in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Between 1860 and 1914, thirty-seven million Europeans immigrated to North America. 39 This massive migration aided the nation in both World Wars. However, it was not completely uncommon for European immigrants in America to return to their native countries when World War I began. While some, such as Fred and Stefania Kalinchuk, stayed in America, over “500,000 German Americans and some 90,000 Italian Americans left the United States to enlist in the armies of their respective homelands.” 40 Mr. and Mrs. Kalinchuk’s decision to remain in America is a small part of a larger story of how immigrants shaped the country throughout the twentieth century.

The Kalinchuks’ contributions to American society continued into another generation. On October 4, 1922, Stefania Kalinchuk gave birth to a son, Walter Kenneth Kalinchuk. 41 The family remained in Ohio, where Walter attended school. 42 Upon graduation from high school, Walter worked as a shipping and receiving clerk until the outbreak of World War II. 43 Then, on September 16, 1942, he enlisted in the Army’s Coast Artillery Corps at Fort Hayes in Columbus. 44 Walter served in the Army for the duration of the war and returned home from France on December 9, 1945. 45 Sometime after World War II he began using the surname “Kallin,” perhaps to avoid having a Russian-sounding name during the years of the Second Red Scare. 46 This tells another interesting story about assimilation in American culture in the twentieth century; two generations of the Kalinchuk family served in American armed forces in times of war, and yet Walter still decided that he had to change his surname to sound more American. On November 16, 1951, Walter Kallin started a family of his own when he married Doris Krueger in Ohio. 47

On December 7, 1966, Stefania Kalinchuk died at age sixty-five in Euclid, Ohio. 48 She was buried in Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, Ohio. 49 Fred Kalinchuk eventually moved to Florida, perhaps for his retirement or to be near his son, and on September 28, 1994, he died at age ninety-seven in Citrus, Florida. 50 He lies buried at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida. 51 Fred and Stefania Kalinchuk’s son, Walter K. Kallin, died on September 28, 2007 at age eighty-four in Citrus, Florida. 52 He is also buried at Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Florida in the same section as his father, Fred Kalinchuk. 53 Though they are gone, their legacies and contributions to America still live on today.

Endnotes

1 “U.S. Veterans Gravesites, ca. 1775-2006,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 12, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk.; “Georgia, Naturalization Records, 1893-1991,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Atlanta, Fulton, GA. Note: Fred Kalinchuk’s Georgia naturalization records list his birthdate as November 7, 1895.

2 “Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Marriage Records, 1810-1973,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred Kalinchuk.; "United States Census, 1930," database, FamilySearch.org (https://familysearch.org : accessed July 7, 2017), entry for Fred Kalincheck sic .

3 “Georgia, Naturalization Records, 1893-1991,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Atlanta, Fulton, GA.

4 Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, Sailors and Marines in the World War, 1917-18, Volume IX (Columbus, OH: The F.J. Heer Printing Co., 1926), 8757, in “U.S., Adjutant General Military Records, 1631-1976,” database Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Ohio.; “U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995,” database Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 24, 2017), entry for Fred Kalinchuk, Cleveland, OH, 1927.

5 “Ohio Soldiers in WWI, 1917-1918,” database, Ancestry.com (https://ancestry.com : accessed June 12, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Cleveland, OH.

6 “Georgia, Naturalization Records, 1893-1991,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Atlanta, Fulton, GA.; Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

7 “Georgia, Naturalization Records, 1893-1991,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Atlanta, Fulton, GA.

8 Ibid.

9 Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking, eds., The Source: A Guidebook to American Genealogy, 3rd rev. ed. (Provo, UT: Ancestry, 2006), 401.; Mary Evelyn Tomlin, “Becoming American: Immigration and Naturalization Records in the National Archives,” in Immigration and the Legacy of Harry S. Truman, ed. Roger Daniels (Kirksville, MO: Truman State University Press, 2010), 179.

10 Ibid.

11 Mary Evelyn Tomlin, “Becoming American: Immigration and Naturalization Records in the National Archives,” in Immigration and the Legacy of Harry S. Truman, 179.

12 Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

13 Ibid.

14 Ibid.

15 John J. McGrath, The Brigade: A History: Its Organization and Employment in the US Army (Fort Leavenworth, KS: Combat Studies Institute Press, 2004), 168.

16 Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.; American Battle Monuments Commission,28th Division: Summary of Operations in the World War (Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office, 1944), 6.

17 American Battle Monuments Commission,American Armies and Battlefields in Europe (Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office, 1938), 41.

18 Ibid., 41-42.

19 Ibid.

20 Ibid., 42.; American Battle Monuments Commission, 28th Division: Summary of Operations in the World War, 7.; Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

21 American Battle Monuments Commission, American Armies and Battlefields in Europe, 42.; American Battle Monuments Commission, 28th Division: Summary of Operations in the World War, 7-8.

22 American Battle Monuments Commission, 28th Division: Summary of Operations in the World War, 8.

23 Ibid., 42.; Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

24 Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

25 “The Roll of Honor,” The Oregon Daily Journal, November 8, 1918, page 14, Newspapers.com.; “Roll of Honor,” The Sandusky Star-Journal, November 8, 1918, page 8, Newspapers.com.; “Roll of Honor,” The Daily Argus-Leader, November 8, 1918, page 3, Newspapers.com.; “Our Roll of Honor,” The Quad-City Times, November 8, 1918, page 10, Newspapers.com.; “American Casualties in Fighting on the French Front,” The Washington Post, November 9, 1918, page 4, Newspapers.com.; “United States’ Roll of Honor,” The Detroit Free Press, November 9, 1918, page 8, Newspapers.com.

26 “The Roll of Honor,” The Oregon Daily Journal, November 24, 1918, page 19. Newspapers.com.; “Official Casualty List,” The Sunday Oregonian, November 24, 1918, page 23, University of Oregon Libraries, accessed March 23, 2017 http://oregonnews.uoregon.edu/lccn/sn83045782/1918-11-24/ed-1/seq-23/.

27 American Battle Monuments Commission, American Armies and Battlefields in Europe, 42.

28 Jerold E. Brown, ed., Historical Dictionary of the U.S. Army (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2001), 320.

29 Robert H. Ferrell, America’s Deadliest Battle: Meuse-Argonne, 1918 (Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 2007), 40-47.

30 Ohio Adjutant General’s Office, The Official Roster of Ohio Soldiers, 8757.

31 Ibid.

32 Ibid.

33 Ibid.

34 “Find A Grave: Fred O. Kalinchuk,” database, Findagrave.com (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi : accessed July 2, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk.

35 “U.S., Army Transport Service, Passenger Lists, 1910-1939,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 12, 2017), entry for Fred Ongrby Kalinchuk.

36 “U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995,” database Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 24, 2017), entry for Fred Kalinchuk, Cleveland, OH, 1927.; “1940 United States Federal Census,” database,Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 24, 2017), entry for Fred Kalinchuk, Cleveland, Cuyahoga, OH.

37 “Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Marriage Records, 1810-1973,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Fred Kalinchuk.

38 Ibid.; “Find A Grave: Stephanie Kalinchuk,” database, Findagrave.com (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi : accessed March 26, 2017), entry for Stephanie Kalinchuk.

39 Leslie Page Moch, Moving Europeans: Migration in Western Europe since 1650, (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1992), 147.

40 “Immigrants in the Military during WWI,” National Park Service, accessed March 15, 2017 https://www.nps.gov/articles/immigrants-in-the-military-during-wwi.htm.

41 “U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 29, 2017), entry for Walter Kalinchuk, Cleveland, OH.

42 “U.S., World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 26, 2017), entry for Walter Kalinchuk, Cuyahoga, OH.

43 Ibid.

44 Ibid.

45 “New York, Passenger Lists, 1820-1957,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 26, 2017), entry for Walter Kalinchuk.

46 “U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007,” database,Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 29, 2017), entry for Walter Kalinchuk, Cleveland, OH.

47 “Ohio, County Marriages, 1789-2013,” database, FamilySearch.org (https://familysearch.org : accessed April 6, 2017), entry for Walter Kallin, Cuyahoga, OH.

48 “Ohio, Deaths, 1908-1932, 1938-2007,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Stephan A. Kalinchuk sic .

49 “U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed March 19, 2017), entry for Stephanie Kalinchuk sic .

50 “Florida Death Index, 1877-1998,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 12, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk, Citrus, FL.

51 “U.S. Veterans Gravesites, ca. 1775-2006,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 12, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk.

52 “Find A Grave: Walter K. Kallin,” database, Findagrave.com (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi : accessed July 2, 2017), entry for Walter K. Kallin.; “U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014,” database, Ancestry.com (https://www.ancestry.com : accessed June 29, 2017), entry for Walter K. Kallin.

53 Ibid.; “Find A Grave: Fred O. Kalinchuk,” database, Findagrave.com (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi : accessed July 2, 2017), entry for Fred O. Kalinchuk.

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