The idea for the construction of a Purdue Union was first suggested by an undergraduate in 1912. He wanted a building where students could meet and work on their various extracurricular activities. The class of 1912 voted an assessment of $5 from each senior to start a fund to erect a home for students, alumni, and faculty activities. Succeeding classes followed the same procedure until 1917.
Photo by Mary Sego – Click on Image
Then came the Great War (World War I). At its close, Purdue looked at the record of 4,013 men and women in the service, at the 67 gold stars, and in many minds there arose the thought that the Union should stand as a permanent memorial to those who had died for it. With this in mind the “Purdue Memorial Union” came into being.
In June of 1922, ground was broken for the Purdue Memorial Union. The building was opened for use in September of 1924. Five additions have been added to the original structure since that time.
A plaque listing the names of those Purdue men who lost their lives during World War I appears on the wall to the right of the main entrance to the Purdue Memorial Union.
“To Perpetuate the Memory of These Men, the Members of the Class of 1926 of Purdue University Have Donated this Tablet.”
The plaque as it appeared on November 11, 1934 during President Edward C. Elliott’s Armistice Day radio address (Purdue Archives photo #PPBUC00797)
As one passes the plaque in the Union bearing the names of those who lost their lives, one wonders what they were like as students or how their short, promising lives came to an end. Many of them came to Purdue for military training; some cut their educations short or put careers on hold. Others made it through the majority of the war, only to face diseases and medical conditions that they could not win the battle against. The influenza pandemic of 1918-1919 took more lives than the war itself, and many died from it before the armistice between the Allies of World War I and Germany, which took effect in the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918. All gave their lives defending our country in one form or another, and out of respect for them, this document was compiled to provide an enduring record of who they were.
World War I barracks on campus (Purdue Archives photo #PPBUC00915)
Information about the veterans was first sought through the Debris yearbook. In its earliest days, the Debris yearbook often supplied a caption which noted a senior’s activities and sometimes a note about one’s personality. The quotes about each came from those entries. For those who enlisted before they finished their educations at Purdue or came to Purdue solely for military training, other sources were used to find biographical information. The “EX” on the plaque indicates the year the men left Purdue for the service. Otherwise the year indicated is the year they graduated from Purdue.
These are the 67 Purdue World War I veterans who died serving their country.
Killed in Action:
Arthur H. Berges, ‘10
Berges, 1910 Debris
Berges graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. While he was a student he was a member of the M.E. Society, Governing Council, and Forum Debating Society.
“Berges stands in a class by himself…”
Jack Burns, ’17
Burns was killed in action on the battlefield. No further information is available.
Sharon McKinley Danford, EX- ‘17
Danford entered the service December 3, 1917, in Indianapolis, IN. He was sent to Ft. Thomas, KY, and then overseas in April 1918. He was assigned to Company D, 1st Army Supply Train. While stationed in Toul Sector, he was killed in a motor truck accident, November 6, 1918, and was buried in Toul, France.
Joseph Gray Duncan, ‘08
Duncan, 1908 Debris
Duncan received a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. He was a merchant and enlisted in U.S. Regular Army in August 1917. He was commissioned Captain at Ft. Niagara, NY, assigned to 315th Infantry, 79th Division. He sailed overseas July 7, 1918.
Duncan was killed in action September 20, 1918, near Montfaucon and buried near Montfaucon, France. He was cited for bravery in action.
James Blaine Fellinger, ’16
Fellinger was killed in action July 25, 1918. No further information is available.
Stimson Webb Goddard, EX- ’18
Corporal Stimson Webb Goddard, Company H, 138th Infantry was killed in the Argonne Forest, France, on October 2, 1918.
John M. Ginney (no date given)
Ginney went to California in early 1917 and was employed on a ranch when he enlisted in Company M, 7th Infantry, California National Guard. He was sent to Camp Kearney, CA. He went overseas in June 1918, assigned to Company F, 58th Infantry, 4th Division. He was killed in action on August 6, 1918, near Bazoches and was buried in Fismes Aisne, France. The American Legion Post, Bunker Hill, IN is named in his honor.
Willard E. Hensley, EX- ‘17
Hensley circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold star Honor Roll: a record of Indiana men and women who died in the service of the United States and the allied nations in the world war.
Willard Hensley attended Purdue for one term and was then employed as a clerk in an agricultural store. He enlisted in the United States Marines on June 13, 1917, in Indianapolis, IN, was then sent to Port Royal, SC, and transferred to Quantico, VA. Hensley was then sent overseas on October 6, 1917, assigned to 97th Company, 6th Regiment, 2nd Division.
He was killed in action June 6, 1918, near Bouresches and buried there. The American Legion Post, Morristown, IN, is named in his honor.
Benjamin H. Hewitt, ‘11
Hewitt, 1911 Debris
Hewitt graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. As a student, he was a member of the Civil Engineering Society, Purdue Athletic Association, and the Varsity Football Squad.
“With as wise a head and as big a heart as is his, the future can show but one word – Success.”
Floyd D. Holmes, EX- ‘13
Holmes. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Holmes was educated at Purdue and became a journalist. He enlisted in Company D, 31st Infantry, Michigan National Guard, Detroit, MI, June 4, 1917. He was sent to Camp McArthur, TX, and then sent overseas in January 1918. He was assigned to Company D, 125th Infantry, 32nd Division. Holmes was killed in action July 31, 1918, near Cierges. He is buried in American Cemetery, Seringes-et-Nesles, Plot 3, Sec. R, Grave No. 144.
Alexander Ferdinand Matthews, EX- ’17
Matthews was a Mechanical Engineering major at Purdue. He was also an alum of Cornell. He served during the war as a First Lieutenant, Aviation, and was killed in action, July 1918. No further information is available.
Worsham circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Elijah William Worsham, EX –‘08
Worsham was a graduate of Purdue. He saw service on the Mexican Border in 1912 as First Lieutenant of a Machine Gun Company. He re-enlisted in April 1917 and was sent to Camp Lewis, WA. Promoted to 1st Lieutenant of Machine Gun Company, 326th Infantry, and later to Captain. He was killed in action September 29, 1918, in Meuse-Argonne Offensive and was buried in the Argonne Forest.
Died of Wounds:
Frank Seely, EX- ’97
Seely died of wounds on the battlefield. No further information is available.
Robert Earl Symmonds, EX- ’16
Symmonds entered the Military Academy in June 1914. He soon endeared himself to those with whom he came in contact by his never-failing good humor and quiet friendliness. He graduated on August 30, 1917, and was assigned to the 2nd Cavalry at Fort Ethan Allen, Vermont. In December 1917, he was assigned to Headquarters Troop, 2nd Division, and proceeded overseas. On June 27, 1918, he was promoted to be a temporary Captain of Cavalry. While with the above organization he took part in the fighting at Belleau Woods, Soissons, and St. Mihiel.
He then left the division, taking a short course of instruction at the Machine Gun School at Sangres, on the completion of which he was reassigned to the 2nd Division and ordered to report for duty with the 5th Machine Gun Battalion. On the afternoon of November 3, 1918, he reported to the commanding officer of this organization, which was then heavily engaged with the enemy in the Meuse–Argonne offensive. Upon reporting he requested that he be assigned to a company that was in actual contact with the enemy. He was consequently placed in command of Company D, which that very night made an attack upon a ridge just south of Beaumont. It was while leading his company in this attack that he was mortally wounded. He was removed to a nearby hospital, where he died November 22, 1918.
These facts were given in a letter by his commanding officer.
Leslie C. Weishaar, EX- ’18
Weishaar, 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Weishaar studied Mechanical Engineering at Purdue and entered the service September 5, 1918. He was sent to Camp Taylor and assigned to 34th Company, 9th Training Battalion, 159th Depot Brigade. Weishaar died of influenza on October 16, 1918, at Camp Taylor, KY. He was buried in the Brook Cemetery, Brook, IN.
Walter Dewey White, EX- ’15
White was a Private in the 309th Infantry. He died of wounds on November 9, 1918. No further information is available.
Wilson, 1912 Debris
Richard Morton Wilson, ’12
Wilson was from Cincinnati, OH. He received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Purdue and was a member of ASME, the Harlequin Club, and Athletic Association.
“Very few have studied as little, cut as much and still made as many A’s as the ‘Billiken’… With his ability to work electrical problems, we believe he will someday be another Steinmetz, provided he stays away from the Cincinnati Traction Co., and quits ‘riding the rods’.”
Died in Foreign Service:
Buell, 1908 Debris
Frank Andrew Buell, ‘08
Buell graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, member of Varsovienne Club, Ohio Club, Athletic Association, and Color Guard Cadet Corps.
“‘Shorty’ hails from the city of Toledo. He has completed the four years’ of work in three and attracted the attention of the Tau Betas by the manner in which he did it.”
Warren Francis Fisherdick, ‘18
Fisherdick enlisted for service in 1917 as a member of Company F, 16th Railway Engineers. He was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in November 1918 but died of disease in Base Hospital No. 79, Bazrilles Sur Meuse, France, on February 20, 1919.
Charles F. Greene, EX- ’15
Green died in France in the service of his country on October 10, 1918. No further information is available.
Edward John Harty, EX- ’16
The exact years Harty attended Purdue are unknown. He moved to Tippecanoe County in 1896 and was a railroad employee. He entered the service February 10, 1918, in Brooklyn, NY. He was assigned to 77th Machine Gun Company, 306th Infantry, 77th Division. He went overseas on March 18, 1918, and was made prisoner by the Germans in July 1918. Harty contracted a disease as a prisoner of war and died December 22, 1918, in Vichy, France, where he was buried.
Reginald Wallace Hughes, ‘06
Hughes, 1906 Debris
Hughes graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He was a member of Phi Delta Theta, the Athletic Association, and Exponent and Debris staffs. His thesis was on tests of steam automobiles.
After Purdue he was an employee of Fletcher Savings and Trust Company. He entered Second Officers Training Camp, Ft. Benjamin Harrison, IN on August 1917 and was commissioned Captain. He was then sent to Camp Funston, Kansas; assigned to 164th Field Artillery, Bridgade Headquarters, 89th Division; and went overseas June 23, 1918, with Army occupation into Germany. He died of pneumonia February 1, 1918, in Bitburg, Germany.
Howard William Irwin, ‘03
Irwin, 1903 Debris
Irwin, nicknamed “Flicker,” was from Northhampton, MA. He graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, was a member of Mandolin Club and Phi Delta Theta, and took Efficiency Test in the Home Heating Company, Indianapolis, IN.
“A romantic young man with a passionate desire for the society of young ladies. Fond of displaying his skill for the use of the French language. Operator of the dog house in the mandolin club. Owner of a fifteen pound blue and white sweater. Morose and jolly by turns. He will get along in the world.”
After graduating from Purdue he worked for General Electric in Schenectady, NY, Northern Electric in MN, and later Bay State Railway in Boston. On June 10, 1910, he entered the Army as Captain of Engineers. In France he was superintendent of a major railway system. He died of bronchial pneumonia on January 6, 1919, at Tours, France.
Harold Douglas MacLachlan, EX- ’14
MacLachlan was a Mechanical Engineering major while a student at Purdue. He was a Major in the 13th Regiment, United States Marines and died of disease on September 27, 1918.
Gladstone Bertram Newhouse, EX- ‘20
Newhouse circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Newhouse was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in the U.S. Regular Army in May of 1917. He was sent to Jefferson Barracks, MO and then assigned to Troop M, 21st Calvary. He was transferred to Camp Logan, TX and assigned to Battery F, 79th Field Artillery, 7th Division. On August 18, 1918, Newhouse was sent overseas. He died of pneumonia on September 17, 1918, in Ploermel, France, and was buried in an American cemetery, grave no. 55, Camp Coctquidan, France.
Elmer Earl Rothenberger, EX- ‘18
Rothenberger, 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Rothenberger was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in the U.S. Regular Army in Air Service on November 3, 1917, in Austin, Texas. He trained at Kelly Field, TX and went overseas on May 20, 1918. Rothernberger was an instructor in Aerial Observation at Chatillon-sur-Seine, where he was accidentally killed September 4, 1918. He was buried at St. Thibault, France. He left behind a widow, Ruth Aldrich Rothenberger, of Lafayette, IN.
Carl James Shipe, EX- ‘19
Shipe, 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Carl Shipe was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in First Officers Training Camp, Ft. Benjamin Harrison, IN in May 1917. He was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant and sent to Camp Taylor, KY; then to Washington, DC, to Camp Wadsworth, SC, and later Camp Colt, PA. He was sent overseas on August 30, 1918, and assigned to Company B, 328th Infantry. He died of spinal meningitis on January 8, 1919, Haute Marne, France. He was buried in an American cemetery, grave 48, Haute Marne, France.
Earl Thomas Steinhart, EX- ‘18
Steinhart, 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Steinhart was a Purdue student when he enlisted in Quartermaster Corps, Regular Army on August 26, 1917, Washington Barracks, DC, and transferred to Camp Meigs, Washington, DC. He was assigned to Headquarters Repair Unit No. 301, Motor Transport Corps. Steinhart was sent overseas on January 4, 1918, and assigned to Administration Company, 13th Motor Transport Corps. He died of pneumonia, March 3, 1918, in Verneuil, France, and was buried in the American cemetery there.
Ernest Raymond Warbritton, EX- ‘10
Warbritton, 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Warbritton studied at Purdue in Civil Engineering. He entered First Officer’s Training Camp, Ft. Benjamin Harrison, IN in May 1917. He was sent to Camp Sherman, OH and later assigned to Company B, 334th Infantry, 84th (Lincoln) Division. He was sent overseas September 1, 1918, and died October 14, 1918, Hospital No. 101, Fort Manor, England. He is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, Crawfordsville. He left behind a widow, Anna Warbritton.
Merle Jesse Weatherly, EX- ‘16
Weatherly, 1916. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Merle Jesse Weatherly was in the U.S. Army and died in France of the flu. He left a wife, Florence Rema (Barnett) Weatherly, and an unborn son, Merle Howard Weatherly. Additional information unavailable.
Died in Service:
Myron Bertman, EX- ’09
Bertram 1917 Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll
Bertman was educated at Purdue and West Point Military Academy. He was commissioned Captain, assigned to 1st U.S. Engineering Corps, and stationed in Washington, DC in June 1917. Bertman was sent overseas in July 1917 and died of pneumonia on September 18, 1917, at St. Nazaire, France, where he is buried. The America Legion in Mount Vernon, IN is named in his honor.
Samuel Lewis Booth, EX- ’22
Booth was in the Purdue Student Training Corps and was a Civil Engineering major. He died of disease while in the service on December 12, 1918.
Arthur J. Burgess, EX- ‘22
Burgess, 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Arthur Burgess was a farmer and entered the Student Army Training Corps at Purdue in October 1918, where he was assigned to Headquarters Company, Section A. He contracted pneumonia and died in St. Elizabeth Hospital in Lafayette on December 14, 1918. He is buried in the Goodland, IN cemetery. The American Legion Post (Burns-Burgess Post), Goodland, IN is named in his honor.
Henry E. Cobb, EX- ’11
Cobb circa 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Henry Cobb was educated at Purdue. At the time of his enlistment he was a supervisor of Manual Training in the public schools of Elgin, IL. He entered the Military School for Aeronautics, Cornell University, November 8, 1917. He graduated February 16, 1918, and was sent to Ellington Field, TX where he died of pneumonia, April 23, 1918. He is buried in Riverview Cemetery in Seymour, IN.
Bruce Culmer, EX- ’14
Culmer circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Bruce Culmer attended Indiana, Illinois State, and Purdue Universities. He was a railroad employee when he entered the service on November 27, 1917, in Indianapolis. He trained in Pittsburgh and Chicago, was transferred to Camp Mineola, Long Island, and assigned to Aviation Section, Signal Corps, 816th Aero Squadron. Culmer was killed in an airplane accident July 9, 1918, at Mineola, Long Island. He is buried in Martinsville, IN.
Edwin C. Danner, ‘09
Danner, 1909 Debris
Danner graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. While at Purdue, he was a member of the Transit Club, Civil Engineering Society, Webster, Athletic Association, Cadet Corp – Second Lieutenant, Mandolin Club, and Band (Manager Senior Year).
“His only deficiency was in the matter of Junior essays and it was only after a conference with Dr. Hatt that ‘Claudie’ decided to hand in the required essay.”
Russel Harrison Dwiggins, EX- ’19
Dwiggins circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Dwiggins attended Purdue and entered Officers’ Training at Ft. Benjamin Harrison, IN on May 1917. He transferred to Aviation Service, was sent to Columbus Barracks, OH and then to Ellington Field, TX, where he was killed in an airplane accident on April 4, 1918. He is buried in Waynetown, IN. He left behind a wife, Mabel E. Dwiggins, and one son, Gerald Russell Dwiggins.
Louis Earl Eisensmith, ‘10
Eisensmith, 1910 Debris
“Eisey” graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. While at Purdue he was a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon, ME Society, and a member of the Football Varsity Squad his senior year.
“He is a product of Kentucky, and he never tires of telling of the good old ‘Blue Grass’ state. He is a good fellow, and is always ready to listen to a good story. If things become too quiet, he has the happy faculty of stirring them up…”
Records show he died October 31, 1918.
Edward B. Foresman, EX- ‘20
Foresman circa 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Foresman trained at Camp Purdue and entered the service on October 9, 1918. He was assigned to Company 5, Student Army Training Corps. He died of pneumonia on December 8, 1919, in Lafayette, IN and is buried in Lafayette.
Walter Raymond Gartin, ‘12
Gartin circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Gartin was educated at Purdue and served on the Mexican Border in 1916. He entered First Officers’ Training Camp, Ft. Harrison, IN in May 1917, was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant, transferred to Camp Bowie, TX, and then to Camp Taylor, KY. He was assigned to 46th Infantry and died of pneumonia on February 18, 1918, at Camp Taylor. He was buried in Rushville, IN.
George Everhard Glossop, ‘15
Glossop, 1915 Debris
Glossop graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. As a student he was active in the Varsity Club, Canoe Club, AIEE, Jeffersonian Debating, Football, Track, Basketball, Athletic Association, Student Council, and Student Union Committee.
After graduation he became the Athletic Director at University of Washington. He entered the service May 15, 1918, at Walla Walla, WA, and was sent to Camp Taylor, KY. He was an instructor in Officers Training School, Field Artillery. Glossop died of influenza October 16, 1918, at Camp Taylor, KY. He was buried in Brownsburg, IN, and was survived by his wife, Alfrieda, and children, George and Sarah Ellene.
Grounds, 1917 Debris
George Lester Grounds, ‘17
Grounds’s parents died when he was nine months old and he was reared by an aunt and uncle. Grounds received his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from Purdue. After graduation he was a life insurance salesman. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy on April 29, 1918, in Indianapolis. He was sent to the Great Lakes Naval Training Station, Chicago, IL, where he died September 30, 1918. He is buried in Second Prairie Creek Cemetery, Vigo County, IN.
Albert Leas Hall, EX- ‘05
Hall circa 1913. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Albert Leas Hall entered the Civil Engineering School at Purdue in 1901. Before graduating, he passed a competitive examination for a commission in the U.S. Regular Army, appointed Second Lieutenant in the Infantry, April 11, 1905. He was promoted to First Lieutenant, July 11, 1907. He graduated with honors from the Mounted Service School, Ft. Riley, KS and the School of Fire, Ft. Sill, OK, and appointed Inspector and Instructor of Artillery for Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan in 1913.
At the outbreak of World War I he was stationed in the Philippine Islands, ordered to return to the United States and appointed Director of Artillery, Ft. Sill, OK. When the 38th Division was formed he was the choice of his state for Brigadier General for Artillery, but was barred because of his young age. He was appointed Commanding Officer at Camp Bowie, TX and Colonel of the Fiftieth Regiment of Artillery. He died October 18, 1918, of influenza at Camp Bowie, TX, and buried in Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis, IN. He was survived by his wife, Daisy De Graff Hall, and one son, Lewis Albert Hall.
He was the highest ranking Army Officer from Indiana who died while in service during the World War.
Carl A. Heilman, ’06
Heilman died in the service to his country in July 1919. No further information is available.
Daniel George Hood, EX- ‘18
Hood circa 1918. Photo courtesy of The History and Achievements of the Fort Sheridan Officers’ Training Camps, Chicago.
Daniel Hood was a Purdue student in Electrical Engineering when the war broke out. He gave up his studies and was admitted to the First Officers’ Training at Fort Sheridan, 5th Company. Upon receipt of his commission, he requested a transfer to the Aviation Service, which was granted, and he was transferred to the aviation school at Austin, TX, then to Geratner Field, Lake Charles, LA. He was then ordered to Mitchell Field, Mineola, NY, where he was assigned to the 52nd Squadron. He was awaiting his sailing orders when he became ill with pneumonia and passed away November 2, 1918. He was survived by his wife, Cora Amphlett Hood.
Harold Roscoe Johnson, EX- ’18
Johnson was a Private, Company F, 36th Infantry when he died of pneumonia at Camp Devins, MA on September 25, 1918.
Lewis Merrill Kirkpatrick, EX- ’20
Kirkpatrick circa 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Lewis Kirkpatrick was a farmer. He entered the service on August 31, 1918, and was assigned to Automobile Mechanic School at Purdue, was transferred to Motor Transport Corps, Ft. Sheridan, IL, and then Ft. Wingate, NM. He was assigned to the Motor Transport Corps, 578th Company. He died of pericarditis at Ft. Wingate on April 13, 1919. He is buried in East Hill Cemetery, Rushville, IN.
Eugene Haskins Kothe, ‘07
Kothe, 1907 Debris
Kothe graduated from Culver Military Academy in 1902 and Purdue University in Civil Engineering in 1905. He was a buyer for Kothe, Wells, and Bauer Company. He was commissioned Captain in Quartermasters Department, U.S. Regular Army in June 1917 and called into service September 8, 1917. He was then sent to Washington, DC, in January 1918. He died of influenza October 14, 1918, in Washington and is buried in Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis.
Albert U. Loeb, EX- ’98
Albert Loeb died in the service of his country on June 7, 1920. No further information is available.
Lynn Rowland McBroom, ’02
Lynn McBroom died February 7, 1918. No further information is available.
Herbert Stahl McCauley, EX- ’20
Herbert McCauley was an Electrical Engineering student at Purdue. No further information is available.
John Ray Mertz, ‘11
Mertz, 1911 Debris
John Mertz graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering. While a student he was a member of Fluer-de-Lis, A.I.E.E. and the Purdue Athletic Association.
“ ‘Squirt’ received a great many votes as the funniest man in the class, deserved them, though his funnyisms are sometimes ill-timed and out of place.”
Robert Elmer Morse, ‘11
Morse, 1911 Debris
Robert Morse graduated from Purdue with a Ph.C. (Pharmacy degree) and belonged to the Pharmaceutical Society as a student.
“To look at him you would not think it, but he must have been pretty nervy when he answered one of Sturmer’s class questions with ‘Who wants to know’.”
He entered the service on June 26, 1918, in Lafayette, IN. He was sent to Camp Sherman, OH, assigned to 20th Company, 5th Training Battalion, 158th Depot Brigade, then transferred to the Medical Department at Base Hospital, Camp Sherman, OH. He died of accidental causes at Camp Sherman, August 19, 1918. He is buried in Lafayette, IN.
Herbert Newby, EX- ‘22
Newby circa 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Herbert Newby was a farmer. He enlisted in Student Army Training at Purdue on October 10, 1918. He was assigned to Company I, Section A. Newby died of scarlet fever December 1, 1918, at St. Elizabeth Hospital, Lafayette, IN. He is buried in Gartland Brook Cemetery, Columbus, IN.
Earl Franklin Retherford, EX- ‘21
Retherford circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Retherford was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in the U.S. Navy on November 20, 1917, in Chicago, IL. He was assigned as radio service electrician, Company Clerk. He died of pneumonia on March 21, 1918, at Great Lakes Training Station, IL. He is buried in Muncie, IN.
Raymond Frederick Reitemeier, EX- ‘21
Reitemeier circa 1917. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Reitemeier was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in the U.S. Navy December 13, 1917, in Indianapolis. He was sent to Great Lakes Naval Training Station, IL and then transferred to Aviation Repair Unit, U.S. Naval Base, at Eastleigh, England. He died of pneumonia in January 1919 at Navy Hospital, Pelham, NY. He is buried in St. Boniface Cemetery in Lafayette, IN.
Sherman Lawin Rhude, EX- ‘22
Rhude circa 1918. Photo courtesy of Gold Star Honor Roll.
Rhude was an employee of Nordyke-Marmon Company, Indianapolis, IN when he entered the Student Army Training Corps at Purdue, October 1, 1918. He died of influenza January 23, 1919, at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Lafayette. He is buried in Garland Brook Cemetery in Columbus, IN.
Anthony Arthur Sego, ‘17
Sego, 1917 Debris
Sego graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy. While a student he was a member of the Purdue Athletic Association and Varsity Track Squad.
“The mile wasn’t the only thing he could run.”
He enlisted in Aviation Service May 1, 1917, in Chicago, IL and trained at the Aviation Ground School, Cornell University, NY. He transferred to Camp Dick, TX, then to Ellington Field, TX. He was rated as Reserve Military Aviator at Door Field, FL and commissioned Second Lieutenant, August 7, 1918. Sego was killed in an airplane accident September 12, 1918, Love Field, TX and buried with military honors in Kentland, IN.
Leslie Selby, EX- ’17
Selby was educated at Arsenal Technical School, Indianapolis, IN, and Purdue University. He was later a teacher at Vincennes High School. He was rejected for military service but accepted for Y.M.C.A. war work on September 5, 1918. He was sent to Great Lakes Naval Training, IL, where he contracted pneumonia after three weeks duty and died on September 27, 1918. He was buried in Vincennes, IN.
Harry Wiltrout, EX- ‘20
Wiltrout was a student at Purdue when he enlisted in the United States Navy on May 17, 1918. He was sent to Great Lakes Naval Training Station, Chicago, IL and promoted to 2nd Class Seaman. He died of empyema on October 21, 1918, at Great Lakes Naval Training Station, IL and buried in Oakwood Cemetery, Warsaw, IN.
William Willington Smith, ‘17
Smith, 1917 Debris
Smith received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue. While a student he belonged to ASME, Purdue Athletic Association, and the YMCA.
“He has common sense in a way that is uncommon.”
Sidney Bain Swaim, ‘10
Swaim, 1910 Debris
Swaim’s nickname was “Sid” and he was from Dallas, Texas. He received his Bachelor of Science from Purdue in Mechanical Engineering.
It is noted in the Debris, “While not possessing all the qualities of a mixer, ‘Sid’ is known to us as a quiet, unassuming, good natured fellow, who takes an active interest in his work, and is never too busy for a chat on Heating and Ventilation or Automobiles. Swaim’s specialty is finishing mechanics tests ten minutes before anyone else in the class.”
Ilo Ivan Taylor (no year noted)
Taylor circa 1910. Photo courtesy of Colorado School of Mines Alumni Magazine, Mines Magazine, volumes 3-4, 1913, p. 211.
Taylor may have been a Purdue instructor. He became a First Lieutenant in the Corps of Engineers at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He died at Camp Lee, Virginia, perhaps of the flu, on January 25, 1919.
Douglas Viele, ‘14
Viele, 1914 Debris
Viele received a Bachelor of Science in Science with honors from Purdue. He was a member of the Purdue Athletic Association and the Glee Club. He was a Captain of the Purdue Cadets for 2 years.
He entered First Officers Training School at Ft. Benjamin Harrison, where he became ill and died of spinal meningitis on July 7, 1917. He was buried with military honors in Oak Hill Cemetery, Evansville, IN.
Carl Williams, ‘15
Williams, 1915 Debris
Williams graduated from Purdue with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. As a student, he was a member of the Band, Orchestra, ASME, and P.A.A., and was a Cadet Lieutenant.
He enlisted in May 1917 and was sent to Ft. Benjamin Harrison, IN. He was transferred to Camp Shelby, MS, where he served as a member of Headquarters Company Band, 151st Infantry. He contracted pneumonia, which caused his death on April 21, 1918, at Camp Shelby, MS. He was buried with military honors in Poseyville, IN.
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Hepburn, William Murray, and Louis Martin Sears. Purdue University Fifty Years of Progress. Indianapolis: Hollenbeck, 2008.
Oliver, John Williams. Gold Star Honor Roll. A Record of Indiana Men and Women Who Died in the Service of the United States and the Allied Nations in the World War. 1914-1918. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Commission, 1921. Print. Indiana Historical Collections, [vol. VI].
Fort Sheridan Association, and Fred Girton. The History and Achievements of the Fort Sheridan Officers’ Training Camps. Chicago?: The Fort Sheridan Association, 1920.
Respectfully compiled by Mary A. Sego, Processing Assistant, Purdue Archives and Special Collections. Mary lost four great-uncles during WWI, and she is committed to honoring their legacy.