134th Infantry Regiment Website
"All Hell Can't Stop Us"
Delmer "Duke" Clark Belders was born in Fort Morgan, Colorado on March 7, 1919. His family moved to Nebraska the following year. He enlisted in the 134th Infantry Regiment, Nebraska National Guard on December 23, 1940. He was promoted from Private First Class to Sergeant on August 20, 1944 and was again promoted to Staff Sergeant on September 30, 1944.
S/Sgt Delmer C Belders was Killed in Action on November 15, 1944 while fighting near Morhange, France. He was posthumously awarded a Bronze Star Medal for his actions during that battle.
Bronze Star Medal (posthumous) Citation
Staff Sergeant Delmer C Belders, 20722165, Infantry,
United States Army, for heroic service in connection with military operations
against an enemy of the United States near Morhange, France on 14 November 1944.
Sergeant Belders was a member of a heavy machine gun section which, while in
support of a rifle company attacking a dominant hill near Morhange, advanced
through direct rifle fire and machine gun fire to a point where effective fire
could be directed against enemy positions on the crest of the hill. When this
action succeeded in forcing the Germans to withdraw, Sergeant Belders and his
comrades made their way across the hilltop and, after overcoming enemy
resistance by the use of hand grenades, set up their guns on the forward slope
of the hill. Although this position was 150 yards ahead of the company line and
subjected to intense enemy artillery, mortar and machine gun fire, as well as
88mm fire from a tank approximately two thousand yards distant, the group
heroically continued at their post, enabling one platoon of the supported
company to overrun several enemy emplacements and capture fifteen prisoners.
When the enemy launched a counterattack and one of the guns of the section
suffered a direct hit by the enemy tank, Sergeant Belders and his companions
maintained a concentration of small arms and automatic rifle fire until the
German attack had been repulsed. Sergeant Belders' unusual daring and
resourcefulness and his unswerving devotion to duty reflect credit upon his
character and training as a soldier. Entered military service from Nebraska.
General Orders no. 57, Headquarters 35th Infantry Division, 18 December 1944
7 April 1945
Subject: Circumstances Surrounding Casualty of EM
TO: Commanding General, 35th Infantry Division, same station
1. Staff Sergeant Delmer C. Belders, 20722165, company D, 134th Infantry, was reported KIA 15 November 1944 on BCR 123 this headquarters dated 22 November 1944. The following circumstances led to this casualty: S/Sgt Belders was a section Sergeant in charge of a section of machine-guns in company "D". On 15 November his platoon was attached to company "C" as support to the company as it attacked toward Morhange, France. "C" company was confronted by hill '257' on which the enemy had placed strong positions. The platoon from "D" company went ahead of "C" company and delivered fire upon hill 257 which then allowed "C" company to advance. A German counter-attack then forced a withdrawal, but the men from "D" company, firing until they had exhausted their supply of ammunition, stopped the attack. During this attack S/Sgt Belders was struck and killed by fire from an enemy tank which was supporting the German attack. For his part in this action S/Sgt Belders was awarded the Bronze Star Medal posthumously. He is buried in the U.S. Military Cemetery at Limey, France in grave 146, row 6, plot "I". The nearest relative and person to be notified in case of emergency is his mother, Mrs. Myrtle J. Scott, 1447 North "B" St., Broken Bow, Nebraska. S/Sgt Clayton L Crawford, 20722169, DuBois, Nebraska, and 1st Lt. Laurence W. Eshleman, O1999956, 622 W. 10th St., North Platte, Nebr. were close friends of the deceased. S/Sgt Belders was an "old" man in the company, as he was a former member of the National Guard. Religion Protestant.
For the Regimental CommanderRAYMOND J. ANDERSON
Capt., 134th Infantry
S/Sgt Belders was originally buried at the temporary U.S. Military Cemetery at Limey, France. He was repatriated in 1948 and now rests at Lillian Cemetery in Lillian, Custer County, Nebraska.