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Herbert Joseph Werner


1928 - 2019
Herbert Joseph Werner Obituary
Herbert Joseph Fritz' Werner August 23, 1928 - October 25, 2019 San Diego Major Herbert Joseph "Fritz" Werner (USMC Retired) passed away at age 91 at home on Friday, October 25th in San Diego, California. Born in New York City on August 23, 1928, Major Werner attended Father Flanagan's Boys Home, Boys Town, Nebraska, and graduated in 1948. He subsequently enlisted in the Marine Corps on May 25, 1948. During his first combat tour in Korea from August 1950 to May 1951, he participated in the defense of the Pusan perimeter, the landing at Inchon, the seizure of Seoul, and the battle of Chosin Reservoir. He again participated in numerous combat operations with the First Marine Division during his second tour in Korea from August 1952 to December 1954. He then served as a Drill Instructor in Parris Island, South Carolina from 1954 to 1955 and as a Recruiter in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from 1955 to 1958. From 1958 to 1961, he returned to Parris Island as a Drill Instructor, Series Gunnery Sergeant, and Chief Instructor of "I" and "L" Companies and the Special Training Branch. From 1966 to 1968, he was assigned as the Non-commissioned Officer in Charge of the Marine Security Guard, American Embassy in Paris, France. During his 22 years of enlisted service, he achieved the rank of Master Gunnery Sergeant. He received a Field Commission in November 1968 while serving with the First Battalion, Ninth Marines, Third Marine Division in Vietnam. During his tours, he served as an Infantry Platoon and 81mm Mortar Platoon Commander. During his fourth tour at Parris Island, South Carolina, he served as the Assistant Director of the Special Training Branch from 1969 to 1971. From 1971 to 1974, he was assigned to the Marine Barracks in Naples, Italy as the Executive Officer, and subsequently reported to Okinawa, Japan, where he served in the Maintenance Battalion, Force Service Regiment, Third Marine Division as the S3 Operations Officer and Headquarters and Service Company Officer, G-3 and Commanding Officer, Headquarters Battalion, Fourth Marine Division. He later transferred to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, California, for duty as the Director of the Drill Instructor School, Deputy G-3, and Director of the Training Audiovisual Center. In 1981, he reported to the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in Parris Island, South Carolina, where he was assigned as Commanding Officer of the Support Battalion until 1983, and subsequently assumed duties as the Depot Inspector and Assistant Personnel Officer. Major Werner's personal decorations include the Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat "V", Meritorious Service Medal with Gold Star, Navy Commendation Medal with Combat "V", Navy Achievement Medal with Two Gold Stars, the Purple Heart with Two Gold Stars, the Combat Action Ribbon, the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Silver Star, the Veterans of Foreign Wars Medal of Honor, and various campaign and service awards. Major Werner retired from the United States Marine Corps on May 1, 1985 after completing 36 years, 11 months, and five days of service. He maintained a life membership in the First and Third Marine Division, Marine Corps Mustang, Drill Instructor Associations, The Chosin Few, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2111, American Legion Post 0434, Fleet Reserve Association, Disabled American Veterans and The Summer of 1948 Marine Recruit Graduates. Upon retirement from the Marine Corps, he entered the California State Correctional Department as a Correctional Officer, later switching over to Prison Industries where he retired as a Production Manager after 17 years. Major "Fritz" Werner was actively involved in the sport of boxing and participated as an amateur at Boys Town and in the Marine Corps. He later became an amateur referee with the AAU, refereeing Inter Service, CISM, AAU, Golden Gloves, Police Athletic League, and Pan Am Games bouts. In 1976, he became a Professional Judge/Referee with the California State Athletic Commission, as well as with the World Boxing Association/International Boxing Federation and their subsidiariesofficiating more than 95 World Championship contests. Goodbye to a great person, family man, and a Marine. The world is more than richer for him being in it. The H.J. "Fritz" Werners are only too few and far between in this nation of ours. An American Patriot through and through. "Fritz" was predeceased by his wife of 59 years, Mary, and his brother, Robert Martzel. He is survived by his daughter, Mary-Elizabeth Willson, grandsons, Blake Willson and Bryce Willson, and great-granddaughter, Luna. He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery with full Military Honors where he will be joining his wife, Mary. In lieu of flowers, family members suggest giving a donation to Father Flanagan's Boys Home, Boys Town, Nebraska. at support.boystown.org.
Published in The San Diego Union Tribune on Nov. 3, 2019
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