Shelbourne Lawton Grantham


Agricultural Education

Dillon, South Carolina

Parents - William Powell Grantham and Bertha Huggins Grantham

Army, Private First Class

79th Infantry Division

Purple Heart, Presidential Unit citation, Good Conduct Medal, American Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with 2 Bronze Service Stars, World War II Victory Medal

Jul 31, 1918

Jul 13, 1944

Killed In Action - France (LaSurieville)

Grantham Cemetary, Dillon, SC.


Personal Remembrances

I wanted to respond to the request for information regarding the Scroll of Honor.  My uncle was in Clemson's class of 1944 which was called for military service while attending Clemson.  His name was Shelbourne Lawton Grantham from Dillon, SC.  He served in the 79th Infantry Division and was killed in action near St. Lo, France July 13, 1944.  His name is on the plaque outside Mell Hall which lists the names of Clemson's class of 1944 killed in WWII.  It is hard to believe that so many men from Clemson's class of 1944 were killed!

I think the Scroll of Honor is a nice way to keep remembering those who sacrificed their lives in service to our country.

Alfred V. (Al) Brown, Jr.
Clemson class of 1979
Columbia, SC

The Dillon Herald, Dillon, South Carolina
Thursday, August 17, 1944, page 5, col.4

Pfc. Shelbourne L. Grantham, son of Mr. and Mrs. William P. Grantham was killed in action in France on July 13th.  Pfc. Grantham was a member of the famous 79th Christian Cross Infantry Division which went into action on June 8.  His last letter written on June 29th stated that he was resting up after having taken part in the Battle of Cherbourg.

Pfc. Grantham was inducted on June 8 1942, at Dillon.  He received his training at Camp Pickett, Va., Camp Blanding, Fla., was on Tennessee maneuvers, desert maneuvers in Arizona and California and was stationed at Camp Phillips, Kansas, before going overseas.  He landed in England in April 1944.

On July 31 Pfc. Grantham would have been 26 years of age.  He is a Dillon High School graduate and attended Clemson College.  He was attending Aeronautics School in Nashville, Tenn. when inducted into the Armed Forces.

Surviving are his parents, Mr. and Mrs. William P. Grantham, two sisters, Miss Sara Grantham, Charleston and Mrs. J. F. Meares, Jr., Nichols; also two brothers, Gary Grantham of Wilmington, Del., and J. R. Grantham of Bishopville, S. C.  His grandmother, Mrs. Mittie E Grantham also survives.

His cheerful disposition, keen sense of humor and pleasing personality won for him a host of friends by whom he will be sadly missed.
Because of his wide popularity and large family connection, news of his death was a shock to many homes in North andSouth Carolina.
Details of how Grantham met his death have not been received. Memorial devices for Pfc. Grantham will be held in the near future atUnionMethodistChurchof which he was a member.

The Dillon Herald,Dillon,South Carolina
Thursday, October 12, 1944, page 7, col. 4

Memorial Service Held For Pfc. Grantham 
A memorial service in honor of Private First Class Shelbourne Lawton Grantham, who gave his life in defense of his county on July 13th, was held on Sunday, September 24th, at Union Methodist Church.

Chaplain Robert N. DuBose, former pastor of the young soldier, assisted by Rev. T. B. Smith, pastor, Rev. J. D. Gulledge, Chaplain W. E. Bost and the South Carolina State Guard, conducted the service.  Avery Moody, Marvin Moody, Rudolph Jones and R Y. Sherwood, accompanied by Mrs. William S. Burns, sang several favorite selections of the deceased.  Miss Nancy Owens, Miss Evelyn Rogers and Jno. R. Watson, accompanied by Miss Gertrude McColl, sang a lovely trio.  R. A. Braddy gave a brief, but impressive tribute and Chaplain DuBose delivered the memorial address.

Gary Grantham of Wilmington, Del., oldest brother of Pfc. Grantham, pinned the gold star on the service flag of the church, and D. F. Barber of the Dillon American Legion post and service office for Dillon County, presented the American flag to his mother.  At the close of the service taps was sounded by Cp. Adler of the Laurinburg-Maxton Army Air Field.

Friends and relatives from Lumberton, Fayetteville, Winston Salem, Bishopville, Florence and Hemingway attended the service and the church was filled to overflowing.

The Dillon Herald, Dillon, South Carolina
Thursday, April 12, 1945, page 1, col. 3

Mr. and Mrs. William P. Grantham have been informed by the War Department that military funeral services were conducted overseas for their son, the late Pfc. Shelbourne L. Grantham.  The services were conducted by his Protestant chaplain and interment was made at Plot Y, Row 1, Grave 11 in the American Military Cemetery at Blosville, France.

Pfc. Grantham was instantly killed by enemy machine gun fire in a daylight attack near La Surierille, France.  He was a member of the 79th Infantry Division which went into action on D-Day plus 2.  Besides his parent he is survived by two sisters and two brothers and a large family connection in North and South Carolina.

The Dillon Herald
Thursday, April 29, 1948, page 1, col. 5
Pfc. Shelbourne L. Grantham Service Sunday at Pleasant Hill

The body of Pfc. Shelbourne L. Grantham, who lost his life in France during the past war, will arrive in Dillon on the Seaboard Thursday morning and be taken to William Funeral Home where it will remain until Sunday.  On Sunday afternoon funeral services will be held in the family cemetery at Pleasant Hill at 3:30 o’clock with full military honors.

Pfc. Grantham was a son of Mr. and Mrs. Willie P. Grantham of Pleasant Hill.  He was born in July 31, 1918, attended local schools and graduated from Dillon High School in 1939.  He is survived by his parents, two sisters, Miss Sarah Grantham of Charleston and Mrs. J. F. Meares, Jr., of Nichols; two brothers, Gary of Wilmington, Del, and Rhondel of Bishopville.  He was a member of a family that is prominently known in Robeson County as well as Dillon.

The Dillon Herald
May 13, 1948, page 1, col. 6

Full Military Honors Given Pfc. Grantham

Friends and relatives attended the last rites Sunday afternoon, May 2nd, for Pfc. Shelborune L. Grantham who was killed in action on July 13, 1944, in the battle of St. Lo.France.

The body arrived by train in Dillon with army escort on Thursday morning, April 29th, and was held in state at the Williams Funeral Home until 3 p.m. on Sunday afternoon, at which time interment was made with full military honors at the graveside in the family cemetery in the Pleasant Hill community.  The many lively floral contributions were arranged by Mrs. Sam. W. Williams.
Pfc. Grantham is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. William Powell Grantham of Dillon and the following brothers and sisters;  Gary Grantham of Wilmington, Del.; J. R. Grantham of Bishopville; Miss Sarah Grantham of Charleston, and Mr. J. F. Meares, Jr., of Nichols.  Also his parental grandmother, Mrs. M. E. Grantham, and an aunt, Miss Cora Grantham, with whom he lived for several years.


Additional Information

Pic., U.S. Army.  Born July 31, 1918.  Entered service June 8, 1942, Ft. Jackson, S.C.; Camp Pickett, VA; Camp Blanding, Fl.; Ft. Ord Calif; Camp Phillips, Kans.; England.  Killed in action in France, July 13 1944.   Attended Clemson College and Anderson Aviation School, Nashville, TN.  Methodist.  Son of Mr. and Mrs. William P. Grantham, RFD 3, Dillon, S.C.

Name: PFC Shelbourne L. Grantham
Parents: Mr. & Mrs. William P. Grantham
Place of Birth: native
Place of Death: LaSurieville, France – Killed in Action
Place of Burial: Plot Y; Row 1; Grave II; American Military Cemetery; Blosville,France
Source and Date of Issue: The Dillon Herald; Dillon,SC; Thursday, April 12, 1945, page 1, col.3

After arriving in England, the division crossed the English Channel and landed across Utah Beach, France.  On 14 Jun 44, the division attacked toward Cherbourg with the 313th and 315th Infantry on 19 Jun 44, and reached the outer fortifications of the fortress-city the following day.  The division began its main assault 22 Jun 44 as the 313th Infantry drove against the strong point at La Mare a Canards.  The 314th Infantry captured Fort du Roule on 26 Jun 44.

The division left Cherbourg and moved south to hold defensive lines along the Ollonde River until 2 Jul 44.  The division then pushed down the west coast of the Cotentin Peninsula in driving rain and took La Haye-du-Puits after repelling German counter-attacks on 8 Jul 44.  It crossed the Ay River behind the 8th Infantry Division on 26 Jul 44 and took Lassey the next day, capturing Laval on 6 Aug 44. It sped past Le Mans on 8 Aug 44 and established a bridgehead near Mantes-Gassicourt over the Seine River 20 Aug 44, which held against German counter-attacks 22-27 Aug 44.  It moved forward with the 2nd Armored Division and crossed the Therain River at the end of the month.
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