Danish WW2 Pilots

Cpl Arndt Rudjard Kjaer

(1918 - 1989)

Cpl Arndt R. Kjær enlisted in the USAAF in late 1942. He served in England in 4th RSM gathering intelligence for the Ninth Air Force listening to German wireless communication.

Arndt Rudjard Kjaer was born on 30 September 1918 in Vasedalen outside Fredericia, to Niels Kjær and Cecilie Marie Kjær (née Nielsen).[1]

Emigrated to the United States

Kjaer’s family emigrated to the United States in 1929, arriving in New York in 15 Juli 1929. [2] They settled in Ohio.

Kjaer graduated from Ridgeville High School in Ridgeville Corners where he served as president of his class.

In October 1940, at the time of his draft, we was a student at the Ohio State University.[3]

He continued his education at the Ohio State University (class of 1943). According to different sources including he graduated from this university. [4] However, it is not possible to confirm this from the yearbooks and his enlistment date and information indicate that he left university prior to graduating. He was a member of the Tower Club dormitory, [5] so-called as it was located in the West Tower of the stadium.[6]

Trained in the German language and culture

Kjaer enlisted as a private (35514948) in the U.S. Army in Cleveland, Ohio, on 3 October 1942. [7] He served in the Army Air Force. By June 1943, he had been promoted to Private First Class.[8]

It is known that, in April 1944, Kjaer had just completed a nine-month course at the University of Minnesota. The course was part of the Army Specialized Training Program (ASTP). [9] It is probable that this course was the ATSP course European, Area and Language from June 1943 to end of March 1944. This purpose of the course was to train the students “in the field of foreign areas and languages […] to develop the soldier for a wide range of uses in the war effort.[10] This was for instance for service in the Signal Corps. The expectancy of the student was to attain fluency in the language and, in addition to this, to be instructed in the historical background, the social, political and economic conditions, and the current situation in the area. It seems likely that Kjaer would have among the some 65 men in the course who studied German, of which most graduates were assigned to Air Force Intelligence.[11]

Signal Radio Intelligence

In April 1944, he was assigned to Detachment “B”, AAF 4th Radio Squadron Mobile (RSM) at MacDill Field, Tampa, Florida.[12]

The particular unit that Kjaer served in is not described in any detail from available sources. [13] However, from general descriptions and details on similar RSMs it is possible to get an idea. These units were self-contained and mobile and equipped to provide radio intelligence by means of radio intercept, radio direction finding, traffic analysis, and the evaluation of enemy air radio traffic, telegraph and voice. There were nine RSMs worldwide in mid-1944.[14]

Kjaer married Jeanne E. Sher—also a student in the class of 1943 at Ohio State University — on 13 June 1944. Kjaer was posted overseas to England short after the wedding. [15] It is believed that Kjaer’s work was to provide intelligence on Luftwaffe activities for the Ninth Air Force.

Kjaer was awarded the Bronze Star Medal on 20 August 1945, at which point he was a corporal. [16] He was discharged from service on 13 December 1945.[17]

Harvey (Harry) Philip Kjaer, Kjaer’s younger brother, served in the U.S. Army. In April 1944, he served in “A” Company, 278th Engineer Combat Battalion, which went overseas to Europe in lete 1944.[18]

After the war

Kjaer returned to Lorain County, Ohio, after the war, where he was a teacher of the Midview School District.[19]

He died on 6 May 1989 in Cleveland, Ohio.[20]


[1] DNA: Parish register, Frederica St Michaelis. He was originally baptized Arndt Rejdar Kjær.

[2] Ancestry: New York, U.S., Arriving Passenger and Crew Lists (including Castle Garden and Ellis Island), 1820-1957.

[3] U.S., World War II Draft Cards Young Men, 1940-1947.

[4] Obituary, The Chronicle Telegram, 7 May 1999.

[5] Ohio State University, Makio, 1940-1943.

[6] The Stadium Scholarship Program, Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Stadium_Scholarship_Program (accessed on 31 March 2024).

[7] U.S., World War II Army Enlistment Records, 1938-1946.

[8] Carl U. Schuler Takes Bride in Service May 29, The Capital Times, 6 June 1943, p. 14.

[9] News of Our Men and Women in Service of Uncle Sam, The Chronicle-Telegram, 26 April 1944, p. 7.

[10] Minnesota, U. O. (1944). The Bulletin of the University of Minnesota. The Biennial Report of the President of the University of Minnesota to the Board of Regents 1942-1944. XLVII(57), p. 14-15.

[11] Op.cit., p. 14-15.

[12] News of Our Men and Women in Service of Uncle Sam, The Chronicle-Telegram, 26 April 1944, p. 7.

[13] The US National archive holds a file unit that may have more information: RG 457: Records of the National Security Agency/Central Security Service, Studies on Cryptology;

SRH 396 Unit History 4th Radio Squadron Mobile (G) (Formerly: 952nd Signal Radio Intelligence Co.) December 1943 - August 1944.

[14] Nederveen, G. K. V. (2001). Wizardry for Air Campaigns Signals Intelligence Support to the Cockpit, p. 8.

[15] Pvt. Aren’t Kjaer and Columbus Girl Wed June 13, The Chronicle-Telegram, 12 August 1944, p. 4.

[16] NA (US): RG64, Award Cards File Unit Air Force Award Cards [Bronze Star]: Jones, Jack - Kollmer, Roy, https://catalog.archives.gov/id/148194257?objectPage=922.

[17] Ancestry: U.S., Department of Veterans Affairs BIRLS Death File, 1850-2010.

[18] News of Our Men and Women in Service of Uncle Sam, The Chronicle-Telegram, 26 April 1944, p. 7.

[19] Obituary, The Chronicle Telegram, 7 May 1999.

[20] Ancestry: U.S., Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014.