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Madison County During World War I

 

Casualties - The Ultimate Sacrifice

 

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MANY SCANNING CASUALTY LISTS

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 9, 1918

There is much anxiety in many Alton homes where the boys have been engaged in action in France, and the casualty lists are being scanned with great eagerness to notify the families by wire a few days before the names appear in the printed lists, and the published lists are between five and six weeks later than the casualties they report, and in some cases more. Most of the information as to casualties to Alton boys, or those from this neighborhood, has come in letters before the official tidings comes in. It is being commented on that so far as any published report gives it, there has been a comparatively small number of cases of either fatalities or bad wounds to the boys sent out from Alton, but their families believe that the casualty lists of the next five or six weeks will bring more bad news. The families who receive word of casualties to their boys are requested to inform the Telegraph as a record is to be made up for the future of the number of Alton boys who either give their lives or are wounded in the service. So far there has been an occasional one in the list, butin many cases the boys are on the road to recovery before their folks even hear of their being injured.

 

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SOLDIERS DEAD HONORED

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 10, 1919

The rooms of Alton Council, Knights of Columbus, are to be graced with fine, large photographs of two of the members who are sleeping peacefully in France, having given their lives in the war for humanity. They are works of art, and are speaking likenesses of the young soldiers, Edward Kniery and Charles Maguire. They are in black frames and are being displayed in one of the windows of the Crivello Delicatessen store in Piasa street, where they are attracting considerable attention.

 

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MONUMENT FOR ALTON SOLDIERS WHO DIED

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 28, 1919

A tablet is to be erected in Alton to the memory of the Alton boys who lost their lives in service, and steps will be taken at once to carry out the plan proposed and voted upon last Saturday by members of Ninian Edwards Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution. The tablet containing the name of the Alton boys will be a work of art, and will be placed on the city hall or in some other place of equal prominence. The committee in charge of the work of getting up the tablet is headed by Mrs. O. G. Norris. Alton has a long list of names of boys who lost their lives after donning the uniform of Uncle Sam, the last being that of Carl Scherer, who died Saturday night at Camp Shelby, Miss., after a two days' illness. Among the boys who have answered the call of death are:

 

Maurice Walter Edward Kniery Fred Glassbrenner Harry Engelhardt Elden Betts
Dolph Barker Charles Maguire Joseph Lippoldt William Epps Cary Waples
Frank Caldwell Carl Scherer Bert Russell Earl Osborne  

 

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SEEK NAMES OF DEAD IN WAR - WILL ERECT TABLET

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 3, 1919

The number of men killed or died in service in Alton and vicinity now totals 27. A list of names, "Alton's Roll of Honor," was published by the Telegraph last Monday and contained 14 names. At the time, the Telegraph asked that anyone knowing of the death of a soldier whose name was not in the list make the name known. Since that time names have come in daily, and today the total is 27. The number includes men, not only of the city, but of the surrounding territory. The Ninian Edwards Chapter has made it known that men who have died after reaching home, but as result of having contracted disease while in the service, are to be included. The tablet will be placed as a tribute to the men who have died, and will be placed in some public place, possibly the city hall. It is the first movement in such a direction, though it has been suggested that the new city hall, if it is built, be named for the city's war heroes. Names of men whose name do not appear on the list will be welcomed at the office of the Telegraph. The list will be found elsewhere in this issue.

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THE HONORED:

 

 

ANDREWS, LEONARD B.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 20, 1918                           Lieutenant Dies in Argonne Battle
Mr. and Mrs. James Andrews of Wood River, formerly of Alton, received a message today from the War Department informing them that their son, Leonard B. Andrews, had been killed in battle September 28. The Andrews family moved from Alton to Wood River two weeks ago. Their son enlisted at Alton in Co. B, 1st Missouri, May 24, 1917, when the company was here guarding the Alton bridge. He sailed for France May 6, 1918, when the regiment was sent overseas. He was in the 138th infantry, which took such a gallant part in the Argonne fighting, and in which a number of Alton boys participated. This regiment contained the largest group of Alton boys so far reported to have been in the worst of the fighting, and of the Alton boys a number have already been reported as killed or wounded. Andrews was 21 years of age. His parents had not received any word from him since he wrote a letter during the month of august. His silence had caused them considerable anxiety.

 

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BARKER, DOLPH or DALPH

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 24, 1918                          Killed in France with 129th Infantry
Dolph Barker, 23, has been killed fighting for his country in France, according to word received this morning by Mrs. John Schonbeckler, from her brother, Thomas Mooney. Mooney was the corporal in the squad in which Barker was fighting. Details of his death are lacking. Mooney evidently believed that the news of Barker's death would reach the United States long before the letter. At the same time that Barker's wife was receiving word through Mooney that her husband had been killed, a letter was received by her from her husband saying he was well and in good health. The letter sent by her husband was dated July 26. The letter from Mooney was dated July 30. This indicates that Barker met his death some time between July 26 and July 30. The letter from Mooney announcing the death of Barker reads as follows: "No doubt you have heard before this of the death of the first Alton boy in our company. He was Dolph Barker. He left for camp with me, was in my squad and came across with me. I was not with him when he was killed, as I had to stay back the day he went into the trenches. He was buried in a little cemetery near here with military honors. The services were conducted by the company chaplain." In the letter from Barker to his wife he said: "You make me homesick reminding me of the good times we had together the winter before I came away. I will be glad when it is all over and we come marching home. I am sleeping in foundries or any place I get a chance now. It will surely be good to get a chance for a good rest in bed." Barker was born in Brighton, Ill. May 19, 1895. He has been making his home in Alton for the past four or five years. He was a barber, and worked for the Kitzmiller barber shop before he went to war. Barker was married to Miss Verna Williamson of 318 East Third street in August 1917. In October he was called away from his bride and went to Camp Taylor. From there he was sent to Camp Houston, and later to Camp Upton. He sailed for France May 15. In none of his letters has he mentioned the fact that he was fighting in the trenches. Barker leaves three sisters, Mrs. Albert Vessel of 217 Spring street, Alton, and Mrs. Lottie Edwards and Miss Annie Barker, both of Brighton. His little wife was not convinced that he was dead, and said she would not believe it until official word was received from Washington. "Oh, how I wish I could go over there and do my part against the Germans," she wept. Relatives of Barker said this afternoon that a message would be sent at once to the War Department asking them to verify the death.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 23, 1921 Body of Soldier To Return From France ... First Alton Soldier to Lose His Life in France
A telegram was received last night by Mrs. Verna Barker that the body of her husband, Dalph Barker, would be shipped from Jersey City, N. J. this morning, and would arrive in Alton via the Chicago and Alton. It is expected the body will be here ____ day night o Friday morning. Dalph Barker was killed _______ 27, 1918, in France, while in _____ Expeditionary Forces. He was a barber when called into the service, and was one of the first Alton boys to be killed. Members of the family were desirous of having the remains of the soldiers sent back home so they could have the privilege of burying it in the family lot.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 25, 1921
The body of Dalph Barker, killed in action overseas while in the service of his country, arrived back in Alton this morning at 5:40 o'clock, and was taken to the undertaking parlors of C. N. Streeper. The funeral will be held Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock and will be in the First Baptist church. Rev. M. W. Twing having charge of the services. Burial will be under the auspices of the American Legion. The body was accompanied to Alton by Private Peter Eagle. Mayor Sauvage gave orders Thursday afternoon that the flag on the City Hall be placed at half mast as an emblem of civic mourning for the dead soldier, and it will so float until after the funeral. The Mayor said that he had made a practice of lowering the flag to half mast every time one of the Alton soldier boys died, and that he felt Alton should pay special honor to this young soldier who had laid down his life on the field of battle. The funeral Sunday afternoon will doubtless be attended by an enormous crowd. Among those who will attend will be some of the boys who were with Barker when he fell. Among these was Thomas Mooney of Alton, who when the body of Barker was to be buried, gave his blanket to wrap the body in. Others from Alton were John Hoehn, Coburn Poole and Robert Lewis. The body of Dalph Barker is the first one that has come so far of the boys who were slain on the field of battle. The others which have so far been sent home are those of boys who died from causes other than wounds. Barker was buried near where he fell in the great offensive against the Germans, which finally resulted in victory for the Allied cause.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 28, 1921
Alton post, American Legion, conducted an impressive funeral ceremony Sunday afternoon over the body of Dalph Barker, who was the first Alton soldier to lose his life in France. The body arrived in New York a short time ago and was immediately conveyed to this city arriving here Friday morning. A large number of Legionnaires gathered Sunday afternoon to escort the body from the home to the Baptist church where Rev. Twing conducted a short prayer service, briefly reviewing the life of Dalph Barker, following his removal to this city in 1914, and prior to his entering the service. Barker left Alton in October 1917, sailed for France in April, and was killed on the English front in July, after which his body was interred, remaining in France until a recent date when it was returned to this country for final interment. Following the services at the Baptist church, the Legionnaires and many friends of the deceased followed the funeral procession to the City cemetery where Alton post of the American Legion had charge of the interment. At the cemetery Dr. Mather Pfeiffenberger, post commander of the Legion in a brief talk eulogized the dead soldier, who sacrificed his life in order that liberty might not perish from the earth, after the remains were interred. Military escort, firing squad and pallbearers were chosen from Legionnaires Tom Mooney, Frank Graham, Joe Mohr, Tom Stanton, Elmer Trout, and Earl Linkogle, former servicemen, attended the casket.
 

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BERKHEISER, LEE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, May 7, 1917                          Young Soldier Dies From Measles
Lee Berkheiser, aged 18, of Cuba, Ill., died this noon at St. Joseph's hospital from pneumonia following an attack of measles. He was a member of Co. I, 5th Illinois Infantry, which is one of two companies detailed for guard duty at the plant of the Western Cartridge Co. The young man was sick only five days, and from the hospital tent at East Alton he had been moved to St. Joseph's hospital when his bad condition became apparent. The statement was made by one of the officers today that the father of the dead soldier, John Berkheiser of Cuba, Ill., had come down to visit his two sons who are with Co. I. When he came, he found his son ill and he stayed. He was with him when death came at St. Joseph's Hospital. This is the second death resulting from measles in the camp at East Alton. The other victims, with one exception, have recovered and it is believed the epidemic has run its course. Horace Baker, the last of the victims, is suffering from pneumonia, but it is expected he will recover. The sick are kept in the hospital tent which has a wooden floor. The explanation given for the fatal results of the disease is that the young men were not used to outdoor life. Being away from home, they did not take the care of themselves they should have done. The other death was in another company. The body of Berkheiser will be taken to Cuba, Ill. for burial by the father.

 

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BEVANEY, PATRICK

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, March 13, 1918                     Venice Soldier Dies

Patrick Bevaney, the first soldier from the Tri-Cities to succumb, died yesterday at Camp Taylor, Ky., near Louisville, from an attack of pneumonia. He was a son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Bevaney of Venice. His body will be brought back for burial at his home city.

 

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BETTS, ELDEN SPRAGUE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 12, 1918                              Lieutenant Elden Betts Died Leading Troops
Lieut. Elden Betts, son of Percy L. Betts of Alton, is reported by his best friend, Lieut. Thomas Gibson, of Chicago, to have been slain in action while leading the company, of which he was acting commander, up a hill, making a charge. The letter written by Lieut. Gibson was dated October 20, and was sent to his mother in Chicago, who communicated by wire this morning with the family of Lieut. Betts. It was said that the letter would follow in the mail. Further than the fact that Lieut. Betts had been killed and that it was while leading his machine gun company up a hill, no details were given. Lieut. Betts was a graduate of the first Ft. Sheridan officers training school. He was one of the few selected to be sent overseas after receiving commissions to study at close range. After going to France he was attached to the regular army and was given a rating as a regular army officer. He had been in Europe since September 11, 1917. His work had kept him very busy, but he would write letters home frequently, telling of his experiences and observations. His letters were such as to indicate that he had dedicated his life to the service, and that he was ready for anything that might happen. He was filled with a patriotic zeal, and a pride in doing his work well that indicated he would rise in rank. Killing of his officers had resulted in the command devolving on Lieut. Betts, but so far as known he had not been commissioned as a captain. He was serving in this capacity when he is reported to have lost his life. Lieut. Gibson's letter was the first hint the family had received that Lieut. Betts had been killed. Last week a report came that the young officer had been wounded badly, but how that story came could not be explained, as the family had not heard of it until asked about it. The family have telegraphed Washington for information on the subject. They consider, however, that the statement made by Lieut. Gibson is reliable, owing to the close friendship between them, they having been closely associated both as officers and friends since Lieut. Betts went into the service.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 20, 1918                             Lieut. Elden Betts Death Confirmed
The reported death of Lieut. Elden Betts of Alton, son of Percy L. Betts, was confirmed by a War Department message which was received by the family today. The message, signed by an officer of the War Department, said: "I deeply regret to inform you that Lieut. Elden Betts, infantry officer, is reported killed in action October 9." This message confirms a report sent by a friend of Lieut. Betts in a letter which was written by the friend to his own mother in Chicago, in which he described the battle and told of the death of his friend. Lieut. Betts was acting Captain of a machine gun company, and was ranked as a regular army officer. He had been attached to the 16th infantry. The family of Lieut. Betts did not give up hope until they had the official notice, though the interruption in his letters gave them some ground to worry. However, the incident of his being mosted as "missing" before had caused them to receive with reserve any information of any casualty to him. First Lieut. Elden Sprague Betts was a member of the Machine Gun Company, 16th Infantry. He was 25 years of age. He attended the First Officers' Training School at Fort Sheridan in May, 1917, and after his graduation went to France, going over in September of last year. Shortly after going to France he was put in the Regular Army, 18th Infantry. His entrance into the Regular Army occurred on November 15, 1917, after attending French Officers' Training School. Betts was in active fighting since January 1918. He was officially reported as killed in action October 9, by Harris, adjutant general. Extracts from a letter from Lieut. Thos. Gibson, on October 20 to his mother in Chicago, describing the Battle of Argonne Woods on October 9 follows: (during this battle Lieut. Elden Betts lost his life) "About two weeks ago we went into the line again, relieving another division which had been driving. Two days after we took over the division we went 'over the top' early one morning. We made great progress, and captured a famous hill where the French had lost so many men a couple of years back. Then we waited several days until the division on our right and left caught up. We had gone too fast for them. We got our instructions to take the hill around where the Boche were entrenched strongly. There was a dense forest around the hill, and this is what we formed up in. When our barrage started, Fritz started one too, right on the woods with everything he had. It was surely hot. Lieut. Taylor was badly wounded by a shell and the command of the company went to me, so a second lieutenant and myself were left to bring the company through. Well, I got the company out and started forward. Fritz was not far off, and certainly in force. He gave us everything he had. Men and officers were killed and wounded all around me, and now I wonder how I ever escaped. We gave Fritz a good beating, however, and took our objective, and the next morning went forward three miles without having anything more than a few shells hurled at us. That night we were relieved. Poor Betts got his at the foot of the hill. Too bad. He was a fine fellow, and my best friend in France. When I get back I must get into communication with his people and tell them all about his great work."
 

Source:  Alton Evening Telegraph, March 18, 1919

The family of Lieut. Elden S. Betts have received a letter from Brigadier General Frank Parker, of the First Division, in which is included a copy of the general order issued October 16, 1918, in which Lieut. Betts is given highest praise. The letter to Miss Betts, his sister, follows:  "First Division, February 1, 1919.  My Dear Miss Betts:  Your letter of December 11 has reached me, and I have sought diligently for further details concerning your brother's death. I can give you now all that is known definitely. First, Lieut. E. S. Betts was killed on October 9, 1918, just north of Hill 240, while commanding the machine gun company of the 16th Infantry, in the desperate fighting that took place on that day. He is buried near the spot where he fell, not far from the town of Exermont. While he was still a lieutenant in the machine gun company of the 18th, I as brigade commander, transferred him to the 16th Machine Gun Company (16th Reg. of Infantry) to command that country, while awaiting his Captaincy for which I had recommended him. You may feel proud of your brother. He had from the beginning attracted my attention as a splendid type of our American manhood. I am sending you a copy of a British citation which will be a testimonial to his character and record. All honor to the brave men who with heart, brain and body gave the great effort that was the hardest to give. May our country never fail to recognize in its proper proportion the services of such men as Elden S. Betts, who with perfect courage and complete self-effacement sought the posts of honor nearest the enemy, and did the dying with no thought other than duty fully done. All honor, my dear lady, to you and to the other members of the family of Elden S. Betts. It is surely such families that will carry our nation through future hours of trial. Very faithfully yours, Frank Parker, Brig. General U. S. Army.  Headquarters 1st Infantry Brigade, American Expeditionary Forces, France. October 16, 1918. General Order No. 13.  The Brigade Commander cites the following officer for the motive hereinafter given:  First Lieutenant Elden S. Betts, commanding M. G. Co., 16th Infantry. Officer of the finest personal and military qualities, has, from the beginning of the operations of the First Division, until killed while leading his company in the desperate fighting between the Argonne and the Meuse on October 9, been conspicuous for his courage, zeal, efficiency and loyalty, consistently setting the finest example to his subordinates, and possessing at all times the complete confidence of his superiors.  By command of Brigadier General Parker.  (Signed) J. W. Crissy, Major, Infantry, U. S. A. Brigadier Adjutant."

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 12, 1919

Mrs. John Berg has planted a tree, adorned with an American flag, in front of her premises, 723 Alby street, in honor of Elden Sprague Betts, who was born in the house. Captain Elden S. Betts was killed on October 9, 1918 at Hill 240, while leading the Machine Gun Company of the 16th Infantry of the First Army Corps of the regular army in the terrible battle of the Argonne Woods.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 10, 1921              Church to Dedicate Tablet in Memory of Soldier Killed in World War
Members of the St. Paul's Episcopal church will dedicate a tablet in memory of Elden Betts, one of the Alton soldiers who was killed in the World War. The tablet will be placed in the church, near the altar. It is planned to dedicate the memorial tablet on Oct. 9th, the third anniversary of the young officer's death. He was killed in action on Oct. 9, 1918. Elden Betts was the son of P. L. Betts of Twelfth street. At an officers' training camp he was commissioned a lieutenant, but by distinguished service rose to the rank of Captain. Many testimonials of his bravery and heroic death have been received from members of his company.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, September 13, 1921
The body of Lieutenant Elden Betts, one of the Alton soldiers killed in the war, will not be returned to Alton. Members of the family, when asked by the government if they desired the body returned, decided to let it remain in the military cemetery in France where it was buried. P. L. Betts, father of the young officer, who has had military experience, said they had decided it more feasible to let the body remain in France because there it is in a military cemetery, which will always be kept up as the resting place of the bodies of men who died in the service of their country. A memorial service for Lieut. Betts will be held in St. Paul's Episcopal Church on October 9, when a memorial tablet, presented by his father, will be dedicated.


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CALDWELL, FRANK E.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 20, 1918

Casualty list:  Frank E. Caldwell was listed as dead from disease.

 

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ENGLEHARDT, HENRY H.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 5, 1918 WWI                        Soldier Dies a Hero on Fourth of July
Henry H. Englehardt of Alton, aged 27, died on the field of battle in France on the Fourth of July. This message has just come to his brother in a letter from Harry's Colonel in France, Col. Abel Davis. The letter, which is dated July 9, 1918, somewhere in France, is as follows: "Mr. Herman F. Englehardt, Alton, Ill.: My Dear Mr. Englehardt: On July 4, 1918 this regiment participated in an engagement in which your brother, Henry H. Englehardt, Private, Co. G, took part. In this engagement. Henry died on the battlefield. From personal accounts of his comrades, I may vouch that he died a hero. The engagement terminated in a hand to hand fight, in which all of our men participated, your brother among them. The officers and men of the regiment mourn his loss and extend their condolences to you. He has not died in vain. In future engagements in which this regiment may take part, your brother's gallant and heroic deeds shall be our inspiration to carry us to victory. Sincerely yours, Abel W. Davis, Colonel." Harry wrote a letter dated July 2, in which he said that he did not know where he would be on the Fourth of July. He also said he did not know how soon he could write again. That letter reached his brother Saturday morning. Monday morning, two days later, came the letter announcing his death. Henry Englehardt, who was employed in the Duncan Foundry and Machine Shops, left Alton September 20 with the second contingent of 82 men for Camp Taylor, Ky.

 

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EPPS, WILLIAM

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, June 11, 1918                           First Fatality Among Alton Drafted Men
The first fatality among Alton men drafted into the service of their country is that of William Epps, who was killed Monday in an accident at Vancouver, Wash., according to word that came to his wife's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Bentley of 301 Madison avenue. Epps, before entering the service, was employed at the Duncan shops as a machinist. He was put into service as a machinist and was transferred eventually to Vancouver, Wash., where he was engaged at one of the airplane factories. It is said that he had become very expert at working with the motors that run airplanes and that he was eventually put on one of the machines. Whether he was serving as a flying mechanician, as a pilot, or what it could not be said, as details of the accident were not sent. According to those who knew him, Epps was a very skillful mechanic. He was a young man, full of patriotism and was perfectly willing to engage in his country's service in any capacity. It was because of his skill as a machinist he was selected to take up work at that trade in an airplane factory and was finally given the post of an expert in operating the engines. Epps name may go down in Alton's history as the first of the Alton boys who met a sudden death after entering the service of the United States, at least he is the first reported. It is supposed that his fatal injuries were the result of a fall. Epps was married on the first day of September 1917 to Miss Hazel Bentley, and twenty days later left for Camp Taylor with the second Alton contingent. After being shipped out to camp he worked as a machinist, and later was transferred to the aviation fields. When word was received of the death, the young wife was visiting at Gillespie, and a message had to be sent to notify her of the news. She will arrive home this evening. Mrs. Epps, who is the only child of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bentley of 301 Madison avenue, will not be 18 until her next birthday. The body of Epps will leave Vancouver this evening and will arrive in Alton on Saturday or Sunday, and will be taken to the Bentley home, where services will be held. The body will be accompanied by an escort of young aviators. Epps had resided in Alton for some time, but is a native of Carlinville. His parents are dead but he leaves several brothers and sisters, besides his young wife. Epps was 24 years of age.

 

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FISCHER, HIRAM EDWARD

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 16, 1918                         Marine Dies in Action While Serving in France
First Man From Alton Gas and Electric Company Office to Enlist Killed June 15, Fighting in France
Mr. and Mrs. George Fischer of O'Fallon, Ill., received official notice from the government last evening that their son, Hiram Edward Fischer, had been killed in action June 15. The young man was twenty-one years of age. For a year before going into the service he was employed as ticket seller at the office of the Alton Gas and Electric Co. He was the first to leave the service of the company for the war. On May 19, 1917 he enlisted in the Marine Corps, and has since been in the 86th Company, Sixty Machine Gun Corps of the Marines. He has been in the thick of the fighting since the middle of February, according to word received in Alton. The official notice from the government says no more than the lad was killed in action on June 15. While in Alton the boy made a large number of friends here. He made his home while here with his sister, Mrs. Elmer Woods, of 1219 Diamond street. The relatives and friends of Fischer celebrated his birthday last Sunday. He wrote to his parents some time ago asking them to celebrate his birthday even though he could not be here. "I will be at the party in spirit," he wrote, "even though my body is thousands of miles away." The birthday party was held in honor of the boy twenty-nine days after he died. Relatives are wondering whether or not Fischer attended the party in spirit.

 

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FITZGIBBONS, JOHN

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 10, 1918                      Soldier Dies in Mexico
The body of Private John Fitzgibbons arrived in Alton this morning from Camp Stanton, Mexico, where the young soldier died last week. The body was delayed in arriving due to the fact that there are but two trains a week out of the town where he died. The body was taken to the Fitzgibbons family, two and one half miles south of Delhi, where it will remain until Sunday. The funeral will be held Sunday at 10 o'clock from St. Alphone's Catholic Church at Brighton, Rev. John Marion officiating. Interment will be in Greenwood Cemetery.
 

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GILLESPIE, WILLIAM 'BILL' F.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 5, 1918                    Soldier Killed in France
Mr. and Mrs. William Gillespie received word indirectly this morning that their only child, William F. Gillespie, had been killed in France, October 3. The letter came to Robert Rundell of Alton from his brother who gave the story of the "going west" of "Bill" Gillespie. The father was serving as an election officer in his polling place when the tidings were brought to him, and he immediately gave up that work and took up an inquiry. He had received no notice from the war department, nor had his son's name appeared in a casualty list, but young Rundell's letter gave such important information the parents were not really in doubt as to its accuracy. Rundell, writing to his brother, said that Gillespie was killed by his side in action, in the great fighting which has been participated in by the 138th Regiment, and which has won for that regiment undying fame. Gillespie was a member of Co. B, which was partially recruited at Alton during the period when the Alton bridge was being guarded by that company under Capt. Larrimore. Gillespie was the only child of his parents, and his death is a sad shock to them. They are proud of their boy dying nobly for his flag, but the fact that he was all they had makes their sorrow that much keener. To add to the uncertainty regarding the report of the death of Will Gillespie is a letter which George Demuth of 318 Monument street has received from his brother, Harry Demuth, who was also in the Argonne drive as a member of the 105 Ammunition Co. C. Demuth's letter was dated October 7, which was four days after the date that young Gillespie is supposed to have been killed. Demuth states that he had seen Gillespie and that they had talked together a long time. He also stated that Gillespie was as "fat as a pig." Mrs. Barbara Kaeser today received a letter from her son, Philip E. Kaeser, dated October 4. In the letter Kaeser speaks of seeing about 25 Alton boys October 2. Among them was William Gillespie. He said that the boys had been in the big drive, that they were then relieved and were on their way down out of the mountains to southern France.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 9, 1918

Mr. and Mrs. William Gillespie received a telegram Friday night from the War Department telling them there was no information of any kind regarding their son, William Gillespie, having suffered any mishap. They were informed that cable inquiry was being made. It will be recalled that a soldier wrote to relatives in Alton he was close to William Gillespie when he was killed in action. This news came last Tuesday morning, and was imparted to the parents of the Gillespie boy, but the anxiety was tempered somewhat by another letter published in the Telegraph in which it was told by another soldier that he had seen William Gillespie, and that he, with a number of Alton boys in Co. B, had passed through the campaign and war on their way back from the lines.

 

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HAINES, LESTER

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 21, 1918
Lester Haines, who went with an early contingent to France, is reported dead. His father, Captain Haines, has just received word that the son's death occurred on October 29th. There was no details of the death.
 

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HOGGATT, HARRY

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 22, 1918                   Soldier Killed After Shaking Hands with Brother on the Battlefield
The Telegraph today received a copy of a death announcement sent to Mr. and Mrs. Ross Black of Wood River, by Mr. and Mrs. H. Hoggatt of Kansas City, Mo., announcing the death of Harry Hoggatt. Instead of the formal death notice, the parents had the proud privilege of sending out an unusual announcement which reads as follows: "Attained His Ambition and Died on the Battlefield Serving His Country. With deepest regret we have learned that our youngest son, Harry Hoggatt, aged seventeen years, eight months, 79th Co., 2nd Battalion, 6th Regiment, U. S. Marine Corps, A. E. F., France, was killed in action October 5th, nineteen hundred and eighteen, four months and nine days after he enlisted. He fought in several battles and suffered many hardships, and we only find consolation in the fact that he died fighting for the noblest cause. His brother, R. M. Hoggatt, Ph., M., 3, 16th Company, 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment, U. S. M. C., France, writes: 'We met going into battle only long enough to shake hands and say goodbye. Harry was killed by a bursting shell and buried on the field of battle. I visited his grave after the battle.' Mr. and Mrs. H. Hoggatt." (Harry Hoggatt formerly worked at Wood River Refinery.)

 

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JACKSON, FRED

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 6, 1918                      Soldier Makes Supreme Sacrifice
News reached Alton today that Fred Jackson, formerly a machinist at the plant of the Western Cartridge Company, had been killed in France on September 29, The information came to Miss Mae Grisham of 410 West Fourth street, from Jackson's mother, Mrs. Minnie Jackson, at Bardwell, Ky. Mrs. Jackson received the information in a telegram from the War Department. The message, however, did not state at what point in France Jackson had lost his life. Jackson was a member of Co. G, 119th Infantry. He went from Bardwell, Ky., and had been in France several months. While working at the Western Cartridge Company, Jackson and his mother lived at 608 East Eighth street. Besides his mother, Jackson leaves two sisters and two brothers, Ray and Jerry, both of whom are in the service of their country. Jerry at present is overseas in Co. A, 1st Pioneer Infantry. In a letter to his mother written two days before his death, Jackson wrote: "I am living a clean life and if I never get back home I expect to meet you all in heaven." Another interesting feature with the news of the supreme sacrifice that Jackson has made for his country, is the fact that Miss Grisham has received a letter from him, dated five days before his death, but post marked at Bordeaux, France, October 4. In his letter Jackson says: "I have been in the trenches several times and have been on No Man's Land on some very dark nights. I have had some experiences in the great war. I am at present several miles from any civilians or stores or anything. About all I see are soldiers of several nationalities. I can hear the artillery guns firing now most all the time." Jackson wrote that he hoped the war would be over soon and that he would be able to get back home and enjoy some of the comforts of home life. "You folks must not grumble about eating a little corn bread," writes Jackson, "for I eat hard tack lots of times and think it is fine, but we usually have bread twice a day. But I have not seen a piece of pie or any ice cream since I have been in France. We can't buy it anywhere, but that is a very small part of a soldier's life in France. But that is all right, we are all willing to make sacrifices and they are only small ones."

 

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KEENE, THAD

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 27, 1918                   Soldier Makes the Supreme Sacrifice - Shot Twice and Gassed
Thad Keene, 31 years old, was killed on the battlefield in France on the eighth day of October, according to a letter received today by his brother, Frank Keene, of North Seminary street, Upper Alton. The letter was written by the lieutenant of the company, telling of the young man's death. Thad Keene answered the call of the government for men very soon after the United States entered the war. He was living in Upper Alton with his brother at that time. He joined the marines and was sent to France a year ago last May. The family had not heard from him for some time, and they were uneasy about him until the letter came today setting at rest any anxiety and uncertainty about his whereabouts. In the letter from the lieutenant, he states that the young man was a brave fighter and died fighting. In August he was shot in the leg by a bullet, which penetrated the leg above the knee and came out below the knee. He was in the hospital on account of this injury when the hospital was gassed by the Germans. He recovered from being gassed and also from being shot, and returned to the battlefield. On the eighth day of October he was killed.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 21, 1921 Body of Soldier to Arrive Tomorrow
Funeral services over the body of Thad Keene of West Alton, which is expected to arrive tomorrow from France for burial here, will be held at St. Mary's Church at 1 o'clock Sunday afternoon. After the ceremonies at the church the body will be taken across the river, where interment will take place at the West Alton Cemetery.
 

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LARRANCE, GRANT

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 23, 1917                              Guardsman Dies From Pneumonia
Grant Larrance, one of the soldiers in the company of Illinois Guards stationed at the plant of the Western Cartridge Co., died at St. Joseph's Hospital Sunday afternoon from pneumonia. He was one of the number of men there who contracted measles and pneumonia followed. He was very sick and was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital where he died. Other patients who contracted measles are getting along all right. Larrance was 22 years of age. The body was sent to Ridge Farm, Ill. today for burial. He was a soldier in Company 1 of the Illinois National Guards. He came to East Alton with the National Guards from Danville. In the same company was a brother, but the brother was married and was sent back to his home as the result of the orders issued by the government some time ago. Larrance was examined the first part of last week, and passed the examination. Shortly after being examined he was taken ill and remained in the army hospital until Sunday, when he was removed to the St. Joseph's Hospital.

 

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MAGUIRE, CHARLES EDWARD

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 22, 1918               Soldier Killed in France

 Police Magistrate and Mrs. Patrick Maguire were notified by the War Department Thursday night that their son, Charles, had died in France October 8. This message confirmed statements made in a letter by George Smith of East Alton, written to Mr. and Mrs. George Smith, his parents, and which was received last Saturday. In this letter Smith, who had been a close friend of Charles Maguire, and had been with him ever since they entered the service, said that his friend had been badly wounded and he said that he had been told that he had died later in a hospital. The soldier assumed that his family knew all about it, however, and the information he gave was just enough to cause much anxiety. The Maguire family decided not to anticipate the announcement by the government, believing there was a chance that the information of young Smith might not have been accurate. They continued to hope for the best, though with heavy hearts, because Charley had not been heard from in a long time. The War Department message coming Thursday night dissipated all hope that had been held. Charles Maguire was 29 years old. He was in Co. I, 132nd Infantry. He was one of the drafted men sent to Camp Taylor and his going was characterized by the utmost willingness. He was a patriot of the truest type, and in all his letters home he had expressed the utmost willingness to go through with whatever was in store for him. He was a young man who possessed a very large circle of good friends in Alton, was very popular, and the tidings of his death caused general sadness. In the same company with Charles Maguire, beside George Smith, was Cecil Sherer of Alton. The parents of Sherer are deeply concerned over their son as they have not heard from him recently. Maguire was a member of Alton Council 460, Knights of Columbus, and was the second member of the order to make the supreme sacrifice on the field of battle. The other was Edward Kniery. Maguire was a Fourth Degree member of the order, and before leaving for service was given a farewell by the Fourth Degree members. He was also the second member of the Cathedral Parish to have a gold star replace the white.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 3, 1918          

A requiem mass for Charles Maguire was celebrated at SS. Peter and Paul's Cathedral this morning at 8 o'clock, at which the members of the parish showed their respect and attended mass in honor of the first member of the Cathedral congregation who laid down his life on the field of battle in France. The mass was for the parishioners. Tomorrow there will be another mass to be attended by the Young Men's Sodality in which he held membership and who will affix a gold star to their service flag in his memory. There was a large attendance at the service. It was conducted just as any regular funeral service would be held in the Cathedral, except there was no casket in the usual place. No other detail was missing. The young man's body was buried where he fell on the field of battle in France, and the family are uncertain as to what will be done later on about the remains being brought back home.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 31, 1918            Father Receives Copies of Son's Pictures

Magistrate Patrick Maguire today received a number of copies of a photograph made in the St. Mihiel sector during the fighting there in which his son, the late Charles Edward Maguire, participated. The father received a letter from his son telling him to look in the Chicago Tribune of a certain date, and on looking there the father discovered the picture of his son, Charles Edward, a member of a squad which had captured a German machine gun with all its crew, without firing a shot. Soon thereafter the parents in Alton were told that their son had been killed in action, possibly a few days after his picture was taken. The father learned where he could get the prints of the picture, and he sent to the firm in New York, and had a dozen copies made and sent to him. They came in today and will be valued possessions of the family, as they are the only pictures they have of Charles Edward in France, in action. In front of the group of soldiers is the captured machine gun. The members of the party are fully armed and wear their helmets and the features of Charles Maguire were very distinct.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 8, 1919

A requiem mass was celebrated at SS. Peter and Paul's Cathedral for Charles Maguire, son of Magistrate and Mrs. Patrick Maguire, who was killed in the battle of the Argonne in France, just one year ago today. Word of his death did not come until after the signing of the armistice.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, August 30, 1921

The remains of Charles Maguire, who died on the field of battle in France, will arrive home soon. A telegram received today by Magistrate Patrick Maguire said that the body of Charles Maguire had arrived at Hoboken, J. J., and that it would be shipped immediately on receipt of instructions from the family. Word was sent by way of Chicago as some of the boys there who were with Charles Maguire in battle when he died, desire to place a wreath on the casket, and a party of them have indicated that they desire to accompany the remains to Alton and be here at the time of the final burial in Greenwood cemetery. The arrival of Charles Maguire's remains here may be coincident with the arrival home of the remains of Maurice Walter, another Alton boy, who died a heroic death on the field of battle.

 

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McCUNE, GEORGE DEWEY

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 4, 1918                          Killed in France
That his son, George Dewey McCune, a member of the Marine Corps had given his life for the defense of the American flag in France on October 3, was the word that came to Grant McCune of 2038 Brown street today. The young man had enlisted in the Marine corps and went to France. He had participated in much heavy fighting and had done his part well. He had a wide acquaintance in Alton and the news of his death was of the deepest interest to many people of Alton. The young man was 20 years of age and his parents reside at 2038 Brown street. George McCune, the young man who fell on the battlefield, had been in the service of the country since the United States entered the war. He enlisted as soon as the call came for men, and was one of the boys to be sent to France early in the game. The McCune family had three sons in the service. They were all anxious to get in at the start, and the youngest son was refused admittance at first because of his age but he was accepted later.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 17, 1921
Funeral services for George D. McCune, whose body recently was returned from France, were conducted yesterday at the Upper Alton Presbyterian Church by the Rev. John Morrison, the pastor. George McCune was a son of Charles and Mary McCune and was born at Browns Station, Mo., May 30, 1892. He resided in East St. Louis and Edwardsville before coming to Alton. While here he was a prominent member of the Twelfth Street Presbyterian church. He enlisted in St. Louis on December 31, 1917, and was immediately assigned to Paris Island, S. C. He was next stationed at Camp Ovantico, Md., and after a stay of three months sailed for France. With the 3rd replacement battalion of the 144th, he landed at Brest and was sent to Chatillion for further training. He was killed in the capture of Mont Blanc Ridge on October 6, 1918, and was buried by his comrades in St. Stenne. At the time of his death he was entitled to wear three battle clasps on his victory medal. He was stationed at Chatillion from May 10, 1918 to June 8 of the last year. From there he went to Beileau Woods and joined the Sixth Regiment, with which he was at the front until June 5. He fought in the battles of Vierzy, Soissons sector, July 18 to 22, 1918, where a successful attack was made on German positions.

 

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OSBORN, EARL W.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 7, 1918                              Soldier Dies of Influenza at Paris Island
George H. Osborn of 2408 Brown street, principal of the Humbolt school, received a telegram today announcing the death of their son, Earl W. Osborn, at Paris Island, S. C., from an attack of influenza and pneumonia. Earl was the second son of Mr. and Mrs. Osborne, and was 19 years old. He graduated from the Alton High School in the Class of 1917. He entered Shurtleff College in the fall of 1917. In July last, he went to the Great Lakes, joining the Marines, and was later transferred to Paris Island where he was a member of Company 248. The first telegram of November 5 announcing his sickness followed immediately after the receipt of a letter from the young man stating that he had been inoculated four times and was feeling fine. The body will be brought to Alton for burial. This is the second bereavement that recently has befallen Mr. and Mrs. Osborn, their 3 year old daughter, Dorothy, passing away six weeks ago.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 9, 1918
George H. Osborne of 2408 Brown street, principal of the Humbolt school, received a telegram this morning announcing that the body of his son, Private Earl W. Osborne, would arrive in Alton from Paris Island, S. C., on Monday morning. Mr. Osborne stated that the funeral services would be held late Monday afternoon and would be private. Rev. M. W. Twing, pastor of the First Baptist church, will officiate, and the burial will be in Oak Grove cemetery.

 

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PICKING, W. N. (CAPTAIN)

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 30, 1918                           Captain Goes Down with Liner Off the Coast of Ireland
Letters received by friends from the wife of Capt. W. N. Picking, for a long time connected with the Western Military Academy, tell that he was drowned off the coast of Ireland when he went down with a liner that was sunk September 30. He is well remembered here. The couple lived at the home of Mrs. F. L. Wells and Mrs. Picking was well known for her musical ability. She is now in a broken state of health and in a sanitarium in North Carolina.

 

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RADCLIFF, OVID H.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 25, 1918                             Soldier Dies From Gas
A message came Saturday night to George Radcliff of the Grafton Road, telling him his son, Ovid, had died in a hospital in France from pneumonia, following gassing. The last previous word from him was a letter dated October 5. The young man died November 8. He left Alton October 5, 1917 with a contingent that was sent to Camp Taylor, Ky., and he left there last spring for France. He was in the 129th Infantry. He leaves beside his parents, six brothers and two sisters.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, January 7, 1921 Soldiers' Body Brought Home From France
The funeral of Ovid Radcliff, the Alton boy who died overseas on November 8, 1918, will be held Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock from the Melville church. The body arrived in Alton this morning and was taken to the home of Mrs. L. Spiess, a sister. The funeral party will leave the Spiess home Sunday at one o'clock for Melville. Radcliff is survived by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. George Radcliff, six brothers, Zan, Robert, Fred, George Jr., Earl and Bernard; and by two sisters, Mrs. L. Spiess and Miss Electa Radcliff. He was born May 28, 1888. He entered the service of his country during the World War, and was a member of Co. M, 129th Infantry. He died in a hospital and was buried in a cemetery at Nievre, France. After the signing of the armistice, his family made arrangements to have the body brought home and interred permanently in the Melville cemetery.

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, April 30, 1919
Memorial exercises for Ovid H. Radcliffe, a former well known Godfrey township boy who died in France, November 8, will be held at Summerfield school house on the Grafton road, Tuesday, May 6, at three o'clock under the direction of Miss Katherine O'Donnell, teacher, and the Godfrey township committee. Some time ago a hard maple tree was planted in the school yard and on Tuesday will be dedicated to Radcliffe's memory. A silver plate with Radcliffe's name and the date of his death will be placed on the tree. During the evening, Attorney Gilson Brown of Alton will deliver an address, and the Western Military band will furnish music. A squad of W. M. A. boys will accompany the band. All patriotic friends, who are owners of machines are asked to loan their automobiles to the school for the transportation of the cadets from Upper Alton to Summerfield School. Those who will lend their machines are asked to drop a card to Miss Katherine O'Donnell or Walter Sloan, of Godfrey, Ill. Ovid H. Radcliffe was the son of George Radcliffe of the Grafton road, and was a former well known young man of the neighborhood. He died on November 8, following being severely gassed. Friends are invited to attend the memorial exercises.
 

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ROCHESTER, WALTER

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 3, 1918                           Killed In France

Mrs. Mary Rochester of 1319 East Fourth street, received a telegram telling her that her husband, Walter Rochester, aged 23, had been killed in France August 12. The young man went from Staunton, Ill., October 3, 1917. He left his wife, who has a child five years old. Mrs. Rochester came to Alton after her husband went away, and she procured work here, trying to do her part while her husband was fighting in the army. He leaves his parents, three brothers, and one sister.

 

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RUPPRECHT, ALBERT CHARLES

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 25, 1918                  Soldier Killed in Action
Notice has been received by Mrs. Mamie Brakenhoff of Nokomis, that her brother, Albert Charles Rupprecht, had been killed in action October 7 in France. The notice from the Adjutant General was the first news the family had of the death of the young man. The soldier lived in Alton all of his life, until he was drafted and sent to Camp Taylor last February. From there he was sent to Camp Sevier in a few days, and in May he was sent to France. He was in Co. H, 119th Infantry. He was twenty-eight years of age. The family lived at 3007 Alby street for many years. He leaves two brothers, John of Alton; and William F. of Co. D, 333rd Infantry, now in France; and one sister, Mrs. Mamie Brakenhoff of Nokomis.


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SANDERS, FRED

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, December 7, 1918             Woman Looses Husband To Illness, and Brother To War
Henry Stahlhut, member of prominent Wood River and Ft. Russell township families, died Friday at noon from influenza. Mr. Stahlhut is survived by his wife and one child. The little one was christened at the Eden Evangelical parsonage in Edwardsville by Rev. H. Rahn just a few days ago. Mr. Stahlhut was between 31 and 32 years of age. He was a son of H. H. Stahlhut, and he farmed the old Gottlieb Stahlhut place in Ft. Russell township. He has two brothers in the army, two at home, and two married sisters. His wife, who was Miss Sanders, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fred W. Sanders of Liberty Prairie, is doubly bereaved, for last week she received word that her brother, Corporal Fred Sanders, had been killed in action in France on October 12. The funeral arrangements provide for a service at the home on Sunday afternoon at 1 o'clock, followed by services at the Eden Evangelical Church at 2 o'clock.

 

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VAUGHN, THAD

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 9, 1918                                Soldier Killed in France
Edward Vaughn received a telegram Friday afternoon from the War Department announcing that his son, Thad Vaughn, had been killed in France on the 30th of September. No other word had been received by the father up to that time. The dead soldier was a member of the 138th, enlisting in Alton when Company B was stationed here. After a lengthy stay on this side he was shipped to the other side, and for some time past has been in the midst of the fight. He was scouting when he met his death. Vaughn is the son of Edward Vaughn, a gardener, and was a well known messenger boy before entering the service of his country. His mother is dead, but he is survived by two brothers.

 

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WALTER, MAURICE

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, November 7, 1918                         Former Telegraph Employee Gives Life Defending His Flag
Word came to Mr. and Mrs. Gustave Walter of the North Side that their son, Maurice Walter, was killed in action in France, September 26. The message was the first tidings of the young soldier received in some time. It is not true in his case, as in some others, that any letter written by him dated subsequent to the date mentioned as that of his death has been received, so the family credit fully the official message telling that he had given up his life on the field of battle. Maurice Walter was one of the best beloved of any Telegraph employee among the men with whom he worked. He was an apprentice at the printer's trade. It was with the utmost regret the Telegraph force saw him leave, as his uniform good cheer and his willingness to be of service to others had made him a popular favorite among the employees. Maurice, when war broke out, could take little interest in his work or anything else. He felt that he must be helping in the war. Being under age, he did not immediately enlist, but gave up his work at the Telegraph to take a job where he felt he was directly doing war work. Then, having taken that one step, he concluded to take another by enlisting his service in the army. Last spring he was back home in Alton. He had been sick in camp in Oklahoma, where he was training. He had a head for mechanics and he was given some special rank as a repair man for rifles. In the Telegraph office he had shown a remarkable ability in handling machines of the most intricate kinds. It was this ability that caused him to be called upon to do repair work. He was shipped to France soon after he recovered from the illness in camp, and following his furlough at home. Those who knew Maurice Walter knew that he would be ready to make the sacrifice, whatever it might be, for his flag, as that was the controlling idea in his mind. There is genuine mourning among his family and among those who worked with him over the necessity that caused the loss of a bright, happy young life that had in it qualities which would have worked for the highest usefulness, had not it fallen to his lot to render it for his country's flag. Besides his parents he leaves two sisters and six brothers. He would have been 22 years old in December.

 

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WAPLES, CAREY LANGLEY

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 19, 1918                                     Lieutenant Killed in Aviation Accident at Texas
Lieut. Carey Waples, only child of Mrs. William B. Robinson, and the only grandchild of Joseph W. Carey, was killed in an aviation accident at Kelly Field No. 2, San Antonio, Tex., Thursday morning. He was 23 years old. Word of the accident was conveyed in a dispatch to the mother received in Alton Thursday evening. No details came with the message. The mother of the young officer was in Alton, but his grandfather had gone recently to spend the summer at Harbor Beach, Mich. According to press dispatches from San Antonio, Lieut. Waples and another officer, Lieut. Highley, were in a machine together flying, when the airplane struck a tree. The fall was fatal to Waples, but his companion was not hurt. The death of Carey Waples recalls that a few weeks ago his marriage was the subject of an announcement made by Mrs. Robinson she gave at her residence. He had married a young girl from San Antonio, Tex., with whom he had become acquainted since going there. The plans of the young aviation officer to marry had been kept secret even from his home folks, and they knew nothing of it until they were informed the marriage had taken place. Mrs. Robinson invited in a party of her friends and very happily announced that her son had married a short time before. Carey Waples was one of the most popular of the young society men in Alton. He was the life of the social circles in which he moved, and among the young people who knew him best there was a great grief when the news was received that he had died. Being the only child of his mother, and the only grandchild of Mr. Carey, the death of the young man is a crushing blow to them. Mrs. Robinson had deferred making a start to spend the summer at northern resorts because she wanted to be as close as possible to her son, so she could put in as much time as she could get with him before he would be ordered away to France. Carey Langley Waples was born in Alton March 21, 1895. He was educated in the Alton public schools and after finishing his work there he entered Western Military Academy from which he graduated in June 1913. He entered the military service May 15, 1917 at the Officers Reserve Training Camp at Plattsburg, N. Y. He entered the aviation work August 15, 1917, going to the Boston Tech Ground School. He was sent to Kelly Field December 8, 1917, where he received his commission as Lieutenant February 1, 1918. On June 14, 1918 he married Miss Vera Calhoun of Beaumont, Tex. The body will be brought to Alton for burial and will be accompanied here by Mrs. Waples and by some brother officers. Arrangements for the funeral will be made on the arrival home of his grandfather, J. W. Carey, who is returning from Harbor Beach, Mich.

 

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, July 22, 1918            Planes From Scott Field Fly Over Alton During Funeral Services

While the funeral services were being conducted over the body of Lieut. Cary Langley Waples this afternoon, three or four airplanes from Scott Field flew over the house and hovered about the neighborhood. The body was laid away in Grandview Mausoleum, and while the services were being held in the City Cemetery, the planes continued to fly overhead. The body of the twenty-three year old aviator arrived Sunday at noon, and was taken to the home of his mother, Mrs. William Baldwin Robinson, on East Twelfth street, where it laid in state until 3 o'clock this afternoon, when the funeral was held. The casket was draped in two large American flags, and on the mantle in back of the coffin was a large picture of the young man who gave his life for his country. The body was accompanied north by Mrs. Cary Waples, who was married to the young aviator a little more than a month ago. At St. Louis she was met by members of her husband's family, and brought to Alton in a machine. Harold Wenner, Waples' most intimate friend at Kelly Field, also accompanied the body and served as pallbearer. The other pallbearers were selected from among the aviators at Scott Field. The services this afternoon were conducted by Rev. Edward L. Gibson of the First Presbyterian Church. There were no musical selections, but during the service Rev. Gibson read "Lead Kindly Life" and "Crossing the Bar." A very large number of the family friends attended the services at the home, but entombment at the mausoleum was private. Mrs. W. B. Robinson, mother of Cary Waples, who has been very ill since word of her son's sudden death reached her, was somewhat improved this morning and was able to attend the funeral service this afternoon. Those who came with the body furnished details attending the death of Lieut. Waples. He was flying with an instructor when one of the wings of the machine brushed a tree, and the machine went into a nose dive. On one side was a deep gully into which the machine plunged. Between the smashing of the young man in the fall, and the burns on his body caused by the machine catching fire, the body could not be viewed on arrival at Alton. The three airplanes which were sent from Scott Field soared over the city, keeping a general position in the neighborhood of City Cemetery and over the home where the funeral services were being held.

 

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WEYEN, JOHN                                     Soldier Dies in Camp

Source: Alton Evening Telegraph, October 18, 1918

Mrs. Minnie Weyen of Bethalto received word today that her son, John Weyen, aged 30, who left Bethalto July 28, died in camp at Columbus, Ohio, and the body will be brought back for burial. He was in the saloon business at Bethalto, and quit to go to war when drafted. He leaves beside his mother, a brother William, and a sister, Miss Mabel. Burial will be at Gillespie.


 

 

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