North High School Wall of Honor
David Houghton Berard
Class of January, 1951
David Houghton Berard, 1951

Research done by Claradell Shedd, class of 1953.

David Houghton Berard
Dave graduated from North High in January, 1951. At the time, his next of kin was Mr. and Mrs. Ralph O. Berard, 2821 Forest Avenue, Des Moines, IA. His service number was 17453686.
David Hougton Berard
Year   Rank   Status
January, 1951   x x Graduated from North High, Des Moines, IA
  Schooling x Iowa State College, Ames, IA.
Jan. 23, 1956 x Drafted/US Army x Drafted into US Army in Des Moines, IA (Fort Des Moines).
date x Basic Training x Fort Leonard Wood, MO. Eight weeks.
date x Training x Fort Smith, AR. Eight weeks. Trained to be artillery fire direction personnel.
date x Training/Sgt 1stC x Fort Polk, LA. Battery clerk.
June 7, 1957 x Event x Both parents killed in auto accident in Clarks Grove, MN.
July 15, 1957 x Discharge x Granted hardship discharge as Sgt 1stC.
Returned to Des Moines, IA.
x US Army Reserves x Served in US Army Reserves for an additional two years.
1959 x Civilian x Berard's Florist which had been created and owned by his late father. Dave sold this business
1960's x Employment x Manufacturer's Rep for building specialities for 19 years.
1978-1983 x Employment x Economy Forms, Des Moines, IA
1983-1995 x Employment x Convenience stores in Iowa City and Vinton, IA for 12-1/2 years. Pronto Convenience Store in Coralville, IA.
1995-October 17, 2011 x Retired x Moved to Tower, MN. Remodeled home, etc.
October 17, 2011 x Deceased x Buried in Tower, MN area.
Written by Dave Berard:
I was drafted in December, 1955 and went on active duty on January, 23, 1956. I had dropped out of college for a quarter at Iowa State, and the long arm of Uncle Sam got me. Either in November or early December, Bob Rummens, an old roommate, called me up and suggested that I join the Army Reserve. He told me that because of my ROTC training, I could join and become a corporal. Then if I was drafted, I would go into the Army with that rank. About the day before I was to get my physical to join the Reserve, I received my draft notice. They worked on it, and I was able to join the Reserve and go in with the rank. First they delayed my departure for 90 days, and then about two weeks before I was to go, they changed their minds, and I had to go in two weeks. I went in on January 23, 1956. My first station was Fort Leonard Wood, MO. It was an extremely cold winter with lots of snow, and basic training was no fun. I did have a good deal, as I was a platoon sergeant due to my rank. I had 59 trainees under me. This made my life a little easier. When I was about to leave, they interviewed me to become a cadre person. I was not very interested. Fort Leonard Wood was not a very pleasant place. Also, it seemed to me that those on staff had a rather bad attitude. They were not happy people. I did not want to develop a bad attitude. One weekend Mary came down to see me with Larry and Phyllis Cassaday, and I had a very bad cold. A couple of times I would go home with a sergeant and meet my folks at Atlantic, IA.

The next assignment was to Fort Smith, AR. Once again, I was a platoon sergeant and had some 80 troops under me. A very good friend was the Company Commander at a unit next to ours, and he pulled some strings and got me a Class A pass. This permitted me to leave the post any time I was not on duty. At this post, they trained us to be artillery fire direction personnel. From Fort Smith, I was sent to Fort Polk, LA. This became my permanent post. My first personal assignment/goal was to not be shipped overseas. Most all, those with whom I had contact from both Basic Training and those from Fort Smith were sent to Korea. They always tell you, "Do not volunteer." Well, I did, and became a Battery Clerk. After I got the job, I became concerned, as I embellished my abilities at typing. I was assigned to a first sergeant who was setting up a new battery or company. He was going to retire in six months, and nobody was going to screw up his chances. He taught me very well. The last month he was there, we won the best orderly room in the Battalion and went on to win the best in the Division, which made my life very easy. I had no duty during the entire time I was stationed; no KP, did not go to parades, and I had Sergeant of Arms only once. The other thing that happened to me was that they had a promotion board, and I was promoted to E5 Specialist 2 or Sergeant. I had the least amount of time in grade. I was a little embarrassed to put my rank on my uniform because of so little time in grade. Afriend found out about this and told me to "get the rank on and be proud of so little time in grade, and tell anyone who questions you to go to a place where the sun does not shine." We continued to win the honors for the best orderly room, and the new first sergeant let up on me, and all things went my way. On June 7, 1957, both of my parents were killed in an automobile accident, and I applied for and received a hardship discharge.

Since I had a six-year commitment to the Army, I spent the remainder of my time in the Reserve. I was the Division Morning Report Sergeant and was promoted to Sergeant First Class.
Fort Leonard Wood, MO Fort Smith, AR Fort Polk, LA
Boot camp at Fort Leonard Wood, MO; then Fort Smith, AR, then Fort Polk, LA
David Houghton Berard
US Army Seal

Field Artillery

Sergeant 1st Class
David Houghton Berard
Sergeant 1stC
Army Artillery
US Army

David Houghton Berard
The comprehensive list of names from North High's 1893-2018 graduation classes are from Claradell Shedd's North Des Moines High School website. The names of all North High School graduates can be found online at David Houghton Berard's class page can be viewed at
10/19/10: Lived in MN. Died 10/17/11. Married to Mary Darlene Paullin, North High, Class of June, 1951.
Music: "Wind Beneath My Wings"
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