Hubert Caloud, Site Superintendent with the American Battle Monuments Commission

As we near Memorial Day I think of America’s overseas military cemeteries. The American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) administers, operates and maintains 26 permanent American military cemeteries and 32 federal memorials. A native Iowan is the Superintendent of one of them.
Hubert Caloud a native of Clutier, Iowa served in the Marine Corps for over thirty years retiring as a Sergeant Major. Caloud has been working for ABMC since his retirement from the USMC in 2004. He has been assigned as the Assistant Superintendent of the Ardennes American Cemetery in Belgium and the Manila American Cemetery in the Philippines. He has also been assigned as the Superintendent of Flanders Field American Cemetery in Belgium and the Aisne-Marne and Oise-Aisne American Cemeteries in France.
His current assignment Oise-Aisne cemetery in the Department of Aisne is close to his heart as his Great-Uncle William Kucera from Elberon, Iowa fought next to the cemetery in the 168th Infantry, 42nd (Rainbow) Division in 1918. Kucera’s Company Commander was Captain Edward Fleur whom Fleur Drive in Des Moines is named after. His Uncle Arnold Vileta from Tama, Iowa built several temporary bridges close to the cemetery on the Marne River as a Combat Engineer in General Patton’s 3rd Army in 1944.
Although he was in different wars than WWI and WWII, Hubert is the third generation of his family to represent America in this part of France a fact that he says isn’t lost on the locals he interacts with.
“It means something to people when I say that my family fought to liberate this ground. More passions or a calling than jobs Caloud has served the American Government since he was a teenager almost 50 years ago.
At the grave of his great uncle’s friend, Omar Shearer, who was killed in Sergy, just over the ridge from here. Shearer was the first Guthrie Center, Iowa soldier killed during WWI. The American Legion there is named after him. Caloud is standing at Shearer’s Grave in a film he was asked to make about the cemetery.

7 comments

  1. Hubert Caloud has been very generous with his time during my research of some Norwalk, Connecticut’s war dead. A gentleman who is always eager to help. I owe him a cup of coffee or a beer should I ever travel to Europe to visit some of the cemeteries.

    • I “met” him via Instagram because of that photo of him with the cross of Omar Shearer from Guthrie Center, Iowa. Three of my Grandma Leora’s brothers from there were drafted for WWI. I’ve been following Hubert Caloud’s FB page and you can tell how committed he is to serving all of us, almost as a ministry. Thank you so much for your note. He’d enjoy it, as well.

      I’m just working on a post about Grandma Leora, as three more of her brothers served or did war work during WWII, her five sons served in WWII (only two came home), also a nephew, a son-in-law (my dad), a grandson served in Vietnam (pilot), and a grandson-in-law (my husband, air traffic control), and a great grandson served in the Gulf War.

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