The “Veteran of the Month” for February 2016 is Lloyd Joseph Prevo.
Born on April 23rd, 1922 in the village of Sheldrick, Sheldrick Township, Chippewa County in Michigans’ Eastern Upper Peninsula. Prevo spent his younger years in the Upper Peninsula during the lumber era and then moved with his family to the Green River area south of East Jordan, Mich. in Antrim County.
For a short time Prevo attended the Bush Country School and following another family move, to the Hogs Back Hill area, where he attended the Bennett School, completing the 8th grade.
Prevo helped with the farming chores and later moved down state seeking work while living with his half sister.
He registered with the Selective Service on June 30, 1942 in Detroit, Mich. and shortly after was inducted into the Army receiving Basic and Advanced Training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma.
Prevo was assigned to the 601st Tank Destroyer Battalion and sent to North Africa and following the North African Campaign, the 601st was re-equipped with M-10 Wolverine Tank Destroyers, loaded aboard ships and landed at Salerno, Italy with Operation Avalanche in Sept. of 1943.
This unit was an Elite Special Unit, formed with the intent to stop Hitler’s Panzer Tanks, and was involved in 10 Campaigns and 546 days of lethal combat.
During combat operations, on October 21st, 1943, Private Lloyd Joseph Prevo died in action when his tank took a direct hit and exploded.
One month prior to Prevo being killed in action, his father Joseph Prevo passed away from cancer.
A telegram was sent to notify him, however he never received the notification.
On Nov. 8th, 1943 his mother was notified by Military Personnel that her son had been killed in action.
The Department of the Army told her that she could have him buried in the American Cemetery in Nettuno, Italy or could have him flown back to the states, however it may take up to five years for his return.
Making a very hard decision, she asked that he be buried over there.
As funds would allow, flowers were sent every Memorial Day to decorate his grave.
At the age of 84, in 1984, when asked by her children what she wanted for her birthday, she said she would like to visit her son’s grave, as his final resting place was always on her mind. Mrs. Alena Prevo Stenke got her wish, and with her son Herman and daughter Etla accompanying her, they made her wish come true.
Mrs. Stenke was always present as a Gold Star Mother during Memorial Day Services in East Jordan and was very proud of the sacrifice her son Lloyd Joseph made for his country, and also proud of her other three sons Miles, Ervin and Herman for their Military Service.
Alena was presented with her son’s Purple Heart Medal that she always cherished. On October 21st, 1943 Private Lloyd Joseph Prevo answered the final call and is being honored by the Prevo family.
To honor a veteran, call the program chairman at (231) 588-6067 or on Tuesdays call (231 582 7811 between 3:30 – 8:30 p.m.
The ceremony may be witnessed on the first Thursday of each month at The American Legion Post located on the corner of South Lake and Main streets in Boyne City, Mich. at 6:15 p.m.