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Nields, Benjamin E.

Benjamin E. Nields U.S. Army WWII
Benjamin E. Nields U.S. Army WWII

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Date of Birth: 8/21/1911
Died On: 2/1/1960
Street Address: Milton Rd
Service Number: 32405726
Branch of Service: U.S. Army-WWII

Veteran Code: USARMY-464

Benjamin E. Nields

Benjamin Nields III was born on August 21, 1911, in Rye, New York, to Hazel Cooper Whitelaw, age 24, and Benjamin Nields, age 29. He had three siblings John, Henry and Barbara. In Rye his family lived on Milton Rd and were members of Christ's Church.

Benjamin served as an officer in the U.S. Army during World War II. He was a graduate of Yale and the University of Virginia Law School. His law office was in White Plains. During World II he was a trial judge advocate in the U.S. Air Force and attained the rank of captain.

After the war Benjamin married Sheila Moore in Bar Harbor, Maine, on September 6, 1949, when he was 38 years old.

He was assistant chairman of the National Taft-for-President Club in 1948. He was a member of the Rye Planning Commission, a vice president of the White Plains Chamber of Commerce and in 1952 and 1953 chairman of the Westchester Cancer Crusade. He was chairman of the Rye March of Dimes Campaign in 1956 and served as commander of Rye Post 128, American Legion.

A purely unofficial civic duty he assumed for several years past was arranging, with Mrs, Nields, for the annual Christmas community observance on the Library Green in which all the churches have participated.

He was a member- of the New York State and Westchester County Bar Associations, the Yale Club of New York City, the Apawamis Club and the Manursing Island Club.

Benjamin 3rd Nields died on February 25, 1960, in New York when he was 48 years old.

Rye residents were deeply shocked by the sudden death of Benjamin Nields III, at his home on Ridge Street. Apparently in the best of health, he was stricken stay coronary thrombosis and died almost immediately.

Prominent in Rye's civic and political life, his popularity was manifested by the large attendance at his funeral at Christ's Church and the wealth of floral tributes.

A Masonic service was held at the Harrison Lodge and members of Rye Post 128, American Legion, and the Woman's Auxiliary of the Legion Post joined in expressing their sorrow. Rev. Dr. Wendell Phillips, rector, conducted the funeral service.

Respect for Benjamin as a public spirited individual was noted in the House of Representatives in Washington and the Westchester County Supreme Court, White Plains.

Representative Edwin B. Dooley of Mamaroneck, who Benjamin opposed in the Republican party primary, spoke highly of his ability and his eulogy became a part of the Congressional Record.

James Dempsey, White Plains lawyer with whom Mr. Nields was formerly associated, called the attention of the Supreme Court to his death and delivered a glowing eulogy which was supplemented by Justice Hugh S. Coyle who spoke highly of the Rye man referring to him as ''a true gentleman, a good lawyer and very much. interested in all that was about him with respect to his family, his church and his civic duties.'' Justice Coyle adjourned the court out of respect to his memory. Richard S. Hendey mayor of White Plains, and the Common Council took official recognition of his death with appropriate condolence to his family.

Surviving were his wife, Mrs. Sheila Moore Nields, and son, Benjamin Nields IV; his mother, a sister, Mrs. Barbara Stearns, and two brothers, John and Henry Nields.
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