John W. Healer was born circa 1805 in Pennsylvania. He arrived in Texas prior to June 22, 1835, when he signed an agreement to join a volunteer company organized by William B. Travis to eject Capt. Antonio Tenorio, the Mexican commander, from the garrison at Anahuac. Healer and two others from Harrisburg withdrew from the company when it reached Vince’s Bayou on the way to Anahuac. John W. Healer participated in the storming and capture of San Antonio de Béxar from December 5 to December 9, 1835. He also served as a volunteer in the Revolutionary Army at the garrison of Béxar from December 13, 1835, to February 10, 1836. Here he served as a third sergeant in a company of artillery under Capt. William R. Carey and Béxar commander Lt. Col. James C. Neill. When the First Regiment Texas Volunteers formed on March 5, 1836, at San Felipe, John W. Healer volunteered and served as a private during the San Jacinto campaign under Capt. John Bird until April 21, 1836. Later in the summer on August 2, 1836, Healer enlisted in a company of four-month volunteers and again served under Capt. John Bird until January 18, 1837.
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