Monday, February 25, 2008

William Walker Fearon


As he sat in the office on that windy June day in 1917, the 26 year-old, North Dakota Police Chief probably had a lot to consider as he filled out the paperwork to register himself for service in World War I. A married father of three young daughters, he also had the responsibility for the town's security.

But his life had provided ample experience to bring to miliary service in Europe. Born in Belfast, Ireland in 1890, his family history was based in Cumberland, England.  Coming to America in 1892 from Ireland with his parents, John and Mary Fearon, the family spent some time in Illinois before finally stopping in Scammon, Kansas. Joining the Kansas Infantry in Topeka when he was 18, he rose to a non-commissioned officer in four years. Upon dischage, he traveled to Ray, North Dakota in 1912, and married the eldest daughter of a local Norwegian farm family. Accepting a position on the police force, he rose to the position of Police Chief over the past five years. In the block asking if the were any reason why he should be excluded, he wrote a large emphatic "NO", and handed his registration to Roy Enerson, Chief Registrar. Nevertheless, he remained in his post through the war, and had one more child eight years later - my father.