Ayala, Jr., Aurelio, SN

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Contact Info
Home Town
San Antonio
Last Address
Not Specified

Date of Passing
Dec 11, 2011
Location of Interment
Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery - San Antonio, Texas
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

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Aurelio Ayala Jr., born Oct. 14, 1928, passed away peacefully on Dec. 11, 2011 with Josephine, his beloved wife of 60 years, by his side.
A 1947 graduate of Campbellton High School, he received a diploma in business administration from Draughon's Business College in 1954 and later attended St. Mary's University.
Aurelio was a Navy veteran of WWII and an Army veteran of the Korean War in which he served as a part of the HQ 1st 187th Airborne RCT, having two combat jumps. Following his time in the military, he worked in civil service for Kelly Air Force Base for over 30 years.
Aurelio married Josephine, the love of his life, on July 5, 1951. From the birth of his first child in 1952 to the birth of his thirteenth child in 1974, he made raising and providing for his family his main priorities. Aurelio was a dedicated family man who enjoyed taking his wife and kids on frequent trips to the coast. He was always encouraging of his children to be active both inside and outside of school, attending every practice, game and school activity that he could.
Aurelio was a member of St. Lawrence Catholic Church for over 45 years. He was an avid reader of the newspaper and stayed well-informed of local, national and world events. This interest definitely contributed to his excellent memory, as he was able to recall details of his childhood. He enjoyed sharing his many stories with his family and friends.
As a sports fan, he could be found watching games on TV, especially baseball, every chance he got. He owned many pets, including dogs, birds and turtles, over the years that he cared for deeply. His great sense of humor was well-known, and he was extremely quick-witted. He never went a day without playing the lottery, except for Sundays.
He is preceded in death by his parents Aurelio and Sara Ayala, brothers; Willie Ayala, Beto Ayala, and Carlos Ayala. He is survived by his wife; Josephine Ayala, children; Dianne Steffey (Michael), David Ayala (Kathy), Desmond Ayala (Tammy), Yolanda Rodela (Carlos), Geraldine Vela (Tony), Vivianne Almaraz (Mike), Aurelio Ayala III, Kathleen Rocha (Daniel), Marco Ayala (Ida), Daniel Ayala (Nancy), Mario Ayala, Matilda Ayala Fousie (Larry), and Micaela Elizondo (Noe); 26 grandchildren; and 11-great-grandchildren; brothers; Frank Ayala (Lisa), Ralph Ayala (Elida) and numerous nieces, nephews, and family members. The family wishes to express their thanks to all their friends and relatives for their prayers and support, and to the staff at the Audie L. Murphy VA Hospital, Alamo Heights Rehab Center, and to the parishioners of St. Lawrence Catholic Church.

Visitation will be on Sunday, December 18, 2011 from 12PM to 9PM at Mission South Funeral Home with the Holy Rosary to be recited at 7PM. A funeral procession will be departing the funeral home at 8:30AM on December 19, 2011 to begin a 9AM Mass at St Lawrence Catholic Church. Interment will follow at Ft. Sam Houston. For personal acknowledgment you may sign the guest book at www.missionparks.com in the obituary section
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World War II
From Month/Year
December / 1941
To Month/Year
September / 1945

Overview of World War II 

World War II killed more people, involved more nations, and cost more money than any other war in history. Altogether, 70 million people served in the armed forces during the war, and 17 million combatants died. Civilian deaths were ever greater. At least 19 million Soviet civilians, 10 million Chinese, and 6 million European Jews lost their lives during the war.

World War II was truly a global war. Some 70 nations took part in the conflict, and fighting took place on the continents of Africa, Asia, and Europe, as well as on the high seas. Entire societies participated as soldiers or as war workers, while others were persecuted as victims of occupation and mass murder.

World War II cost the United States a million causalities and nearly 400,000 deaths. In both domestic and foreign affairs, its consequences were far-reaching. It ended the Depression, brought millions of married women into the workforce, initiated sweeping changes in the lives of the nation's minority groups, and dramatically expanded government's presence in American life.

The War at Home & Abroad

On September 1, 1939, World War II started when Germany invaded Poland. By November 1942, the Axis powers controlled territory from Norway to North Africa and from France to the Soviet Union. After defeating the Axis in North Africa in May 1941, the United States and its Allies invaded Sicily in July 1943 and forced Italy to surrender in September. On D-Day, June 6, 1944, the Allies landed in Northern France. In December, a German counteroffensive (the Battle of the Bulge) failed. Germany surrendered in May 1945.

The United States entered the war following a surprise attack by Japan on the U.S. Pacific fleet in Hawaii. The United States and its Allies halted Japanese expansion at the Battle of Midway in June 1942 and in other campaigns in the South Pacific. From 1943 to August 1945, the Allies hopped from island to island across the Central Pacific and also battled the Japanese in China, Burma, and India. Japan agreed to surrender on August 14, 1945 after the United States dropped the first atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.


1. The war ended Depression unemployment and dramatically expanded government's presence in American life. It led the federal government to create a War Production Board to oversee conversion to a wartime economy and the Office of Price Administration to set prices on many items and to supervise a rationing system.

2. During the war, African Americans, women, and Mexican Americans founded new opportunities in industry. But Japanese Americans living on the Pacific coast were relocated from their homes and placed in internment camps.

The Dawn of the Atomic Age

In 1939, Albert Einstein wrote a letter to President Roosevelt, warning him that the Nazis might be able to build an atomic bomb. On December 2, 1942, Enrico Fermi, an Italian refugee, produced the first self-sustained, controlled nuclear chain reaction in Chicago.

To ensure that the United States developed a bomb before Nazi Germany did, the federal government started the secret $2 billion Manhattan Project. On July 16, 1945, in the New Mexico desert near Alamogordo, the Manhattan Project's scientists exploded the first atomic bomb.

It was during the Potsdam negotiations that President Harry Truman learned that American scientists had tested the first atomic bomb. On August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay, a B-29 Superfortress, released an atomic bomb over Hiroshima, Japan. Between 80,000 and 140,000 people were killed or fatally wounded. Three days later, a second bomb fell on Nagasaki. About 35,000 people were killed. The following day Japan sued for peace.

President Truman's defenders argued that the bombs ended the war quickly, avoiding the necessity of a costly invasion and the probable loss of tens of thousands of American lives and hundreds of thousands of Japanese lives. His critics argued that the war might have ended even without the atomic bombings. They maintained that the Japanese economy would have been strangled by a continued naval blockade, and that Japan could have been forced to surrender by conventional firebombing or by a demonstration of the atomic bomb's power.

The unleashing of nuclear power during World War II generated hope of a cheap and abundant source of energy, but it also produced anxiety among large numbers of people in the United States and around the world.
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Month/Year
January / 1945
To Month/Year
September / 1945
Last Updated:
Mar 16, 2020
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