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Crow, William L.

William L. Crow U.S. Army WWII
William L. Crow U.S. Army WWII

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Date of Birth: 3/15/1910
Died On: 11/29/1996 Death Place: Mystic, New London County, Connecticut
Street Address: Forest Avenue
Service Number: unknown
Branch of Service: U.S. Army-WWII

Veteran Code: USARMY-134

William Langstaff Crow

William Langstaff Crow was born on March 15, 1910, in Rye, New York, to Ella Wilson McClenahan, age 28, and Ralph Langstaff Crow, age 31. He had one brother Ralph and two sisters, Eleanor and Alethia.

He grew up in Rye, N.Y., and prepared for Princeton,'33, at Hotchkiss. In Rye his family lived on Forest Avenue and were members of Christ Church.

In college he played freshman soccer, was advertising manager of the Tiger, and skippered the winning intercollegiate yacht; he was commodore of the Princeton Yacht Club. He was a member and officer of Cap and Gown.

After a year in South America with W. R. Grace and Co., Bill joined the family business, the William L. Crow Construction Co., in NYC, which had been founded by his great-grandfather in 1840. He became its head when he was 26 at the death of his father. The company completed major projects in the U.S. and abroad, including the Princeton Club of New York.

He married Barbara Baker on September 14, 1936, in Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan. They had six children during their marriage.

Bill served as an officer in the U.S. Army during World War II.

Major William L Crow Home
Major William Langstaff Crow, U. S. Army, on Saturday rejoined Mrs. Crow and their children, Billy and Margo and Sandra, At their home on Forest Avenue. It is eighteen months since he was last home. Major Crow has been in the European Theatre of War Operations. He is the son of Mrs. Ralph L. Crow of Pine Island,

During WWII, Bill served in the Army Corps of Engineers , 334th Engineer Regiment, in the Mideast and rose to the rank of major and was decorated with the Bronze Star.

The citation accompanying the award stated: "Through his initiative, tactfulness, and devotion to duty, Major (then lieutenant) Crow succeeded in securing the services of the principal sheikh of a large number of Arab villages in recruiting several thousand native laborers needed in the construction of housing, highways, warehouses, utilities, and the operations of plants and other installations in the Khorramshahr area."

Bill returned to Rye after the war, successfully growing the family business.

He was an active, widely known and highly regarded leader of his Princeton class. He was an effective fund-raiser. His son Bill '63 properly refers to his father's "abiding sense of obligation to repay some of the benefits of the education he received at Hotchkiss and Princeton."

Bill Crow died on November 29, 1996, in Mystic, Connecticut, at the age of 86, after an extended illness. He was was buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, New York.

At the time of his death he was survived by his wife, Barbara Baker -Crow at Smithfield, RI, a son, William L. III of Boston; four daughters Margo C. Reis and Barbara Crow, both of San Francisco, Sandra C. Shek of Denver, Ella C. Hays of Shelington, Pa and seven grandchildren.

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