Carl Frederick Kashiemer (Case-hi-mer) would be just a couple months short of his 70th birthday today if he had not become a casualty of the Vietnam War. Carl was born Sept. 1, 1948. He lived and grew up in Rockford less than two blocks from the Elmwood Cemetery, and everyone knew him. He was the fourth child in his family of 3 brothers and 1 sister. Carl was very active, artistic, mechanical and a leader.
Carl bought his first car when he turned sixteen, a 1956 Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria two-door; two tone Colonial White over Bermuda Blue that was “so clean”. He helped Walt Witte keep the Rockford Bakery trucks running in tip-top shape. In high school he was active in track, and was a stand out in football as a running back and co-captain.
Carl Kashiemer enlisted in the Army and entered via Selective Service. He served during the Vietnam War with a start of tour date of September 24, 1968. Carl had the rank of Specialist Four. His occupation or specialty was “Pioneer”. He served with the 5th Infantry Division, 7th Engineer Battalion, A Company.
Carl experienced a serious injury Dec. 20, 1968 which ultimately resulted in the loss of his life. This occurred in or around South Vietnam, Quang Tri province. The circumstances of the casualty were attributed to “Died through hostile action…explosive device”.
Some of the awards and medals that Specialist Four Kashiemer received or qualified for were National Defense Service Medal, Purple Heart, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Vietnam Service Medal.
An online posting for Carl reads: “Thank-you Carl Kashiemer for your service and the life you gave for your country. Carl was a friend, teammate, and classmate from high school in Rockford, MN, Class of ’67. He was active in many school activities including stellar participation in football. I was the best man in his wedding. He married a wonderful young lady and enjoyed that relationship until his death in Vietnam. He had 3 brothers and a sister and was buried with military honors in Rockford, and my sister played taps at his service. I received notice of his death while I was myself in boot camp. Carl was a good and decent guy; a guy’s guy. He liked to cruise to Porky’s in Minneapolis and his early interests always involved cars, and as soon as he was able, he made sure he had a nice and fast car. I’m sure his Army service was just as admirable as his life. I visit him a couple times a year to say hello. RIP.”