Joseph "Joe" Chucker

Air Force Badge
  • Name: Joseph "Joe" Chucker
  • Location of Birth: Bovey, Minnesota
  • Date of Birth: December 28, 1919
  • Date of Death: July 29, 2021
  • Parents: Edward Chucker & Sadie (Chase) Chucker
  • High School and Class: 1940 Greenway High School, Coleraine, Minnesota
  • College:
  • Highest Rank: SGT (Sergeant)
  • Branch: Air Force
  • Other Branch: Army Air Corps
  • Date Sworn In: January 7, 1942
  • Place Sworn In: Fort Snelling, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Date of Discharge: January 10, 1946
  • Place of Discharge:
  • Military Awards:

  • Military Highlights:
    WW II Draft Registration Cards – 10/16/1940 – 03/31/1947
    State: Minnesota
    Name: Joseph Chucker
    Race: White
    Age: 21
    Birth Date: December 28, 1919
    Birth Place: Bovey, Minnesota, USA
    Residence Place: Bovey, Itasca, Minnesota, USA
    Registration Date: July 1, 1941
    Employer: Oliver Mining Co., Coleraine, Itasca, Minnesota
    Weight: 148
    Height: 5-10
    Complexion: Light brown
    Eye Color: Brown
    Hair Color: Black
    Next of Kin: Ed Chucker, Bovey, Minnesota

    WW II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946
    Name: Joseph Chucker
    Birth Year: 1919
    Race: White
    State of Residence: Minnesota
    County or City: Itasca
    Enlistment Date: January 7, 1942
    Enlistment State: Minnesota
    Enlistment City: Fort Snelling
    Branch: Air Corps
    Branch Code: Air Corps
    Grade: Private
    Grade Code: Private
    Term of Enlistment: Enlistment for the duration of the War or other emergency, plus six months, subject to the discretion of the
    President or otherwise according to law
    Component: Army of the United States – includes the following: Voluntary enlistments effective December 8, 1941 and thereafter;
    One year enlistments of National Guardsman whose State enlistment expires while in the Federal Service; Officers appointed in
    the Army of ----
    Source: Civil life
    Education: 4 years of high school
    Civil Occupation: Skilled meatcutters; except in slaughtering and packing houses
    Marital status: Single, without dependents
    Height: 69
    Weight: 143

    Newspaper article: Itasca Iron News, Coleraine, Minnesota - June 25, 1942 - "NOW AN ARMY COOK - Jos. Chucker, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ed. Chucker of Bovey, wanted to get into the air corps, and he really got in. Not as a flier, however. Early this year, Jos. enlisted and he was sent to an air training base at Mt. Clemens, Mich. When the officers there found that Jos. was an expert meatcutter (he grew up in his father's meat and provision market at Bovey) he was put at that work. Showing an aptitude for food handling and preparations, and also considerable leadership, he was sent to an army cooking school in Chicago. When he came back, he was put to cooking, and he rose rapidly in this, until now he is in charge of one of the large kitchens at the Mt. Clemens camp, with a crew of 18 cooks under him, and with very gratifying pay. His folks expect him to come home for a furlough June 10." [This article was originally published in the Grand Rapids Independent.)

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - September 25, 1942 - "Dear Friends: Just came off duty and thought you'd like to see the meals we just prepared. You'll have to excuse the menu, as we refer to it quite often and smudge it a little. Joe Chucker, 31st Fighter Control Squadron, Orlando Air Base, Orlando, Florida
    'MENU - for September 16th and 17th - Supper: Hamburger, Hash Brown Potatoes, Buttered Noodles, Boiled Cabbage, Cole Slaw, Donuts, Coffee, Cream, Bread, Butter and Ice Water.
    Breakfast: Fresh Milk, Fresh Fruit, Dry Cereal, Fried Eggs, French Fried Potatoes, Hot Toast, Butter, Coffee, Cream.
    Dinner: Fried Fish, Mashed Potatoes, Boiled Lima Beans, Brown Gravy, Combination Salad, Creamed Corn, Bread Pudding, Bread, Butter and Lemonade.'
    Thanks, Joe. That menu really makes our mouth water. Oh, yes, it is Corporal Chucker."

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - December 11, 1942 - "Dear friends: Received your swell gift, and want to take this opportunity of thanking you for it. I've been transferred to another outfit about a month ago, and am now in the 31st Fighter Control Squadron. I am still performing my same duty, namely, "cooking". I am up for furlough about the first of the year, and am hoping to see and thank you all personally for all you are doing for us. I wish to thank you for the fine job you are all doing on the "home front", and I know all the fellows from Bovey that are now serving in the armed forces of the United States appreciate your loyalty and good will, and we won't let you down on this end. Respectfully yours, Joe (Chucker)."

    Newspaper article - Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - January 29, 1943 - "Dear Friend: Received your letter today and was indeed happy to hear from the home town folks. First of all, I want to express my appreciation and thanks to the Bovey Service Men's Club and Mr. Barnes for their thoughtfulness in sending me the Bovey Press, as it is a friend from your home town come to visit you. I'm sure the Bovey boys, now in the service, will appreciate this kind gesture immensely. The weather here is surely warm, personally I'll take the north. Due to the kindness of Mr. Clem, I've located Mr. Van Dyke. He lives only a mile or so from here. I dropped in on him the other nite, but he wasn't home, so I will drop in and see him tomorrow nite. Well, friends, will say so-long till next time. Respectfully, Joe (Chucker)"

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - April 2, 1943 - "Joseph Chucker dropped into the office last week, as he was home on his furlough. Army life and the chow must agree with Joe as he has sprouted a soldierly form. Of course, it is Joe's own cooking he's eating, so maybe that's at the bottom of his development. Joe wished to have us extend his greetings to all the other boys in service. So - Hi Fellows!"

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - June 25, 1943 - "June 8, 1943. Dear Friends: It's been quite some time since I've written you so decided its about time to drop you a few lines. I suppose most of you already know I'm a cook, and have been for the past 6 months cooking in the officers mess here at the air base. The work isn't a bit exciting but I run into a lot of interesting officers. Just yesterday I was speaking to a major in the Medical Corp, who just returned from North Africa. He told me many interesting things as he worked in a base hospital and took care of many German and Italian prisoners. He said the Italian prisoners are a jolly lot and are quite satisfied as being captives, while the Germans are very tight lipped and at first believed they would not be held captives very long, as Hitler would free them, but as time went on they started to sense something wrong as they saw more and more German prisoners come in. He said the German moral is cracking more and more every day. The major says the British 8th Army is really a crack outfit and have plenty on the ball, when it comes to a real battle. The morale of our boys over there is very high and as much as they would like to come home, not a one wants to come back until this whole mess is cleaned up and peace and freedom once more rules the world. Well friends, it's getting pretty close to "lights out" so will close till next time. Respectfully, Sgt. Joe Chucker."

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - July 28, 1944 – An Air Service Command Depot (Somewhere in England) – Sgt. Joseph Chucker, son of Mr. and Mrs. Edw. Chucker of Bovey has won high commendation for helping to shatter world’s records overhauling aircraft engines at this Air Service Command depot. He and his fellow mechanics overhauled engines last month totaling two and a half million horsepower, the highest figure recorded since Air Service Command began operations in England. “A knockout blow against Germany” was the way his Commanding General, Brigadier Isaac W. Ott, described the contribution of Sgt. Chucker, whose extra effort makes it possible to maintain a constant air cover over allied armies rolling through Germany. Before entering the Air Forces in January 1942, he attended Greenway High School. Lt. George Chucker, a brother, is also in the service.

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - September 1, 1944 - "Somewhere in England – August 1, 1944 – Dear Horace: I received my “Bovey Press” again after being without it for quite some time due to my overseas shipment. “Thanks” for forwarding it to my new address as I certainly look forward to receiving it. Ann’s letters are even more appreciated (if that is at all possible) over here as she seems to bring the home town nearer to you. She’s certainly doing a fine job and should be commended for it. ‘Keep up the good work Ann. You keep writing ‘em and we’ll keep ‘em flying.’ I’ve been here in England for about six months now and like it pretty well, although the work is plenty tough, but that was expected beforehand. As you no doubt know, I’ve acquired a new job since my arrival here. I’m now keeping the Forts and Libs on the wing. It’s a big change from what I’ve been doing, but I’ve accustomed myself to the change and am beginning to get the swing of things now. I’ve run into quite a few fellows from back home and was certainly glad to see them. At one camp I was in the same barracks as Al Heikkila of Coleraine and didn’t know it till we met in the mess hall a few days later. By the way, I heard Al was back home, lucky boy. There are a couple of fellows here at this base from back home, but I haven’t as yet looked them up. Guess I’d better say “cheerio” for now as our squadron barber has just sounded off for me to step up and get my G.I. haircut. Respectfully yours, Joe Chucker.”

    Newspaper article: Bovey Press, Bovey, Minnesota - February 9, 1945 - "KEY MAN BEHIND SCENES OF SUPPLY - An Air Service Command Depot in England - Sgt. Joseph Chucker is key man behind the scenes of the supply war in Europe. Serving with a station complacement squadron at an Air Service Command depot in England he is working long hours wrestling with the thousands of complex problems that arise in keeping equipment moving to the men of the combat air forces. A soldier since Jan 7, 1942 he has been overseas for 11 months. He attended Greenway High School. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward Chucker and has one brother, Lt. George Chucker, in the service."

  • Wars Involved:
    World War II

  • MIA / POW:

  • Civilian Life:
    Joseph Chucker married Elaine Gewirz in Washington, D.C. in 1950. The couple lived in Silver Spring, Maryland for 67 years until Elaine's death in 2017.

    Joe died in Silver Spring, Maryland and is buried in King David Memorial Gardens, Falls Church, Virginia. He is survived by his children, Lynne (Dick) Hahn, Craig (Diane) Chucker, and Carol (Jake) Silverberg; nine grandchildren; thirteen great-grandchildren; and one brother, Dr. Francis Chucker.

  • Tribal Affiliation(s):