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May 2024

White House Event header new

First Lady Jill Biden (right), accompanied by U.S. World War I Centennial Commission Chairman Terry Hamby, speaks during a WWI remembrance event in the East Room of the White House. (Andrew Harnik/Getty Images)

First Lady Honors World War I Veterans, Advocates Of National WWI Memorial

Chairman Hamby speaking at podium in The White House

First Lady Jill Biden delivered remarks in the East Room of the White House on Tuesday during a reception to honor World War I veterans and those involved in the creation of the National World War I Memorial. Staff, volunteers and others involved in the endeavor gathered as Biden and Terry Hamby, Chairman of the U.S. World War I Centennial Commission (left), spoke to a room that included descendants of World War I veterans. “America will always remember your families’ sacrifice,” Biden said. “Military spouses and children may not wear the uniform, but they serve our country, too. That was true a century ago, and it’s true now. … Your work commemorates a generation who changed our world with their courage and their sacrifice.” Click here to read the whole story, and watch a video of the entire event at the White House.

Members of World War I Centennial Commission, staff members of the Commission, etc.

Members of the World War I Centennial Commission, staff members of the Commission, family members and friends, and many who have contributed to the creation of the National World War I Memorial were in attendance at the White House event.

Grave Site Ceremony For Hello Girl Puts Spotlight On Congressional Gold Medal 

Marie Edmee LeRoux headstone

On May 3, 2024, WWI soldier Marie Edmee LeRoux, a member of Unit 4 of the U.S. Army Signal Corps female telephone operators, known as the "Hello Girls" to their fellow soldiers, received a recognition for which she had waited 79 years. An official VA grave marker, noting her military service in WWI, was placed on her hitherto unmarked grave at Fort Lincoln Cemetery in Bladensburg, MD where she had rested since her death in 1945. 

Marie Edmee LeRoux

Catherine Bourgin, the granddaughter of LeRoux, reflects on the long and winding road that led to the identification of the gravesite, and how "my grandmother in her unmarked grave symbolized all the Hello Girls who served in their capacity valiantly, courageously, with dedication to the mission, and yet when the war was over, they were dismissed, ignored, and then forgotten by their nation for 60 years.Click here to read the entire thoughtful article, and learn how an offhand question sparked a remarkable ceremony to honor both LeRoux and her fellow Hello Girls for their service in WWI.

Tell Congress That YOU Support A Congressional Gold Medal For America's
First Women Soldiers, The Hello Girls

Hello Girls at switchboard with gas masks and helmets square

The U.S. Army Signal Corps telephone operators, respectfully called the "Hello Girls" by their fellow soldiers, made a big difference in WWI. The ability of Marie Edmee LeRoux and her fellow operators to pass rapid tactical information calmly and seamlessly between two allied armies that spoke different languages was a fundamental breakthrough, and helped bring the fighting to an end in the Allies’ favor as much as a year earlier than it might have taken without them, according to General Pershing. But when the Hello Girls finally returned home in 1919 after WWI ended, the women who had served in U.S. Army uniforms received a shock. They were denied veterans status and benefits until 1977. 

Hello Girls pop-up image

The Hello Girls earned and deserve the recognition of a Congressional Gold Medal, and you can join Team Hello Girls in advocating for passage of the Hello Girls Congressional Gold Medal legislation in 2024. You can make your voice heard on this issue right from your computerClick here for our online toolkit that makes it easy to reach out by email to your Representative and Senators.  You can also reach out by phone to the local and district offices of your Senators and Representative, and tell them that YOU want them to cosponsor the Hello Girls Congressional Gold Medal legislation in the 118th Congress

Emails and calls from many Americans just like you have secured the commitments of 59 Senators and 128 Representatives (as of May 28) to support the legislation in their respective Houses.

When their nation called in 1918, the Hello Girls answered – will YOU answer their call for recognition in 2024?

Book Giveaway last chance

May Is Your Last Chance This Year To Register!

Winners of the April Drawing for a copy of Lest We Forget:

  • Mattheus Mitchel of Fortville, IN
  • Jill Powers of South Bend, IN
  • Sarita Kiehm of Torrance, CA
  • Connie Yen of Springfield, MO
  • Jay Hess of Farmington, UT

Those who entered in April are already in the running for the May drawing. Good luck to everyone who enters!

National WWI Memorial In Focus During Memorial Day In Washington, DC

National World War I Memorial overhead

The National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC was a notable topic of discussion during the Memorial Day period, when America honors the men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. This includes the 116,516 men and women who did not come home after World War I. Here are a few of the discussions:

Honoring The Past, Inspiring The Future:
Walmart Pays Tribute To Our Fallen Heroes

McLeish poem snip

The Walmart Foundation has been a substantial donor to the construction of the National World War I Memorial, and the Doughboy Foundation's ongoing educational projects to inform Americans (especially American students) about the service and sacrifice of Americans in WWI. Click here to read more about Walmart's past, present, and future support of the Memorial from Julie Gehrki, Vice President of Philanthropy at Walmart.org, and watch an outstanding video.

Sculptor Reveals Creative Process Behind Bronze Depicting ‘A Soldier’s Journey’ Coming To The National World War I Memorial In DC

Sculptor Sabin Howard at work

Fox News Digital spoke to sculptor Sabin Howard, who is crafting the bronze centerpiece of the National WWI Memorial, shortly before Memorial Day. At almost 60 feet in length, and nearly eight feet in height, when installed it will be the largest freestanding high-relief bronze in the Western Hemisphere. Talking to FOX, Howard said, "There's a very clear message behind this sculpture. It's very much about being human." Click here to read the entire article, learn about Howard's nine-year creative process, and how the sculptor used veterans, Marines and Navy SEALs as models for the sculpture's figures.

Commemorate A Cherished Veteran With A Special Tribute Of Taps At The National WWI Memorial In Washington, DC

Legacy.com Daily Taps snip

Legacy.com is a website founded in 1998 that has become the world's largest commercial provider of online memorials. Legacy.com hosts obituaries and memorials for more than 70 percent of all U.S. deaths. Approaching Memorial Day, Legacy.com informed its viewers of a "unique and reverent opportunity to remember beloved Veterans and family heroes" with sounding of Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. Click here to read the entire article, and find out how "This special moment can be experienced live on the day of tribute and will remain accessible on-demand indefinitely."

National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC Will Unveil A New Feature In Fall 2024

America's Workforce Union Podcast logo

Commissioner Jack Monahan of the United States World War I Centennial Commission joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast on Memorial Day to discuss the National World War I Memorial in Washington, D.C. He also discussed the unveiling of a new sculpture at the memorial slated for this fall. Click here to read the entire article, and listen to the podcast, wherein Monahan talks about the history of the Commission and the work to get approval for the memorial 

Playing Taps Is A Solemn Duty.
He Wanted To Do It Right.

Chris Gekker playing taps

Chris Gekker is a professor at the University of Maryland School of Music, the son and grandson of immigrants who fought for America in two World Wars, and a trumpet player for 62 of his 70 years. Gekker has "spent decades with the weight of taps." Sounding Taps at the National World War I Memorial or at the many, many other places and events where he has performed, the playing "has not become easier." Click here to read the entire article, and learn how, for Gekker, Taps is "the 24 most solemn and beautiful notes he ever plays."

Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial

Honoring Lyle W. Barnes

During the week of Monday, May 26 through Saturday, June 1, 2024, Daily Taps at the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC will sound in honor of World War I veteran Lyle W. Barnes, who was killed in action on July 17, 1918 in France. Barnes is the namesake of Quimby, IA American Legion Post 398.

Barnes was only nineteen years old when he was killed in action in France during World War I. He had been severely wounded in action while serving with the Rainbow Division in France in March 1918. A bullet passed through his shoulder, although he was fortunate that no bones were splintered. He was awarded the French War Cross for bravery in action. After his injury, he returned to duty and volunteered as a battalion scout, one of the most dangerous types of service.

Barnes was killed in action on July 17. An official report confirmed his death on August 20, 1918. The Cherokee Times published two letters in 1919 that were sent to his grandmother, Kate Knight, regarding his service in France. Carl Kringle of Atlantic, Iowa, served as company clerk of M Company, and he wrote, “Barney (as we called him) was a boy whom everybody knew and liked, and if ever a man was deserving of commendation, he was, for he proved himself at all times a good soldier.” He noted that Barnes was “brave and fearless.”


Click here to read Lyle W. Barnes' whole story.

The Daily Taps program of the Doughboy Foundation provides a unique opportunity to dedicate a livestreamed sounding of Taps in honor of a special person of your choice while supporting the important work of the Doughboy Foundation. Choose a day, or even establish this honor in perpetuityClick here for more information on how to honor a loved veteran with the sounding of Taps.

WWI Teaching Resources From The Doughboy Foundation

EdTech logo gif

The EdTech Digest website has published a nice story on how the Doughboy Foundation, "in collaboration with Gilder Lehrman, a cadre of leading US WWI Historians, and Verizon Innovative Learning HQ for distribution, (has) crafted a multi-modal treasure trove of WWI educational materials available via the Verizon platform." WWI Teaching Resources from The Doughboy Foundation is a Cool Tool Award Winner for “Best Social Studies Solution” as part of The EdTech Awards 2024 from EdTech Digest. Click here to read the entire article, and find out how to access the "Cool Tools" to learn (and teach) more about WWI, "The War That Changed The World."

Conservation Efforts Begin Following London Turnover Ceremony For Bell Of USS Jacob Jones, Sunk In World War I

USS Jacob Jones bell on table

Naval History and Heritage Command archaeological conservators have begun treatment assessments on the ship’s bell of USS Jacob Jones (DD 61) in the Conservation, Research, and Archaeology Laboratory on the Washington Navy Yard.
Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jim Kilby received the ship’s bell of USS Jacob Jones on behalf of the U.S. Navy from the U.K. Royal Navy’s Second Sea Lord Vice Adm. Martin Connell, during a ceremony at Lancaster House in London, England, May 15. Click here to read more about the bell, salvaged from the first U.S. Navy destroyer sunk during Word War I, and plans for it to be on display in the future new National Museum of the U.S. Navy 

Two State Winners Bringing Projects About The WWI "Hello Girls" To National History Day's National Contest in June

National History Day logo B&W

National History Day's National Contest in College Park, MD June 9-13 is the culmination of the annual competition cycle and a celebration of student scholarship. In a remarkable turn of events, student teams from two private schools, Whitestone Training Center in Delta Junction, AK and Christ’s Household of Faith school in Saint Paul, MN, will be bringing original projects about the WWI Hello Girls, America's First Women Soldiers, to the National Contest. Click here to read about the Alaska project, why the students selected the Hello Girls as their topic, and what they learned about the female telephone operators in WWI. (We hope to have an article about the Minnesota team in our next newsletter.) Good Luck to both teams presenting their projects about the Hello Girls at the National Contest!

Bay Area Man Searches For Family Ancestor’s Remains 100 Years After Death In World War I

John Curran

Alexander Curran knows his great, great uncle pretty well, even though he died more than 100 years ago. His name was John Curran, and he died in France in World War I before reaching his 28th birthday. But where his great-great-uncle was buried is unclear. Alexander Curran is with a group called Doughboy MIA, and someday he would like to bring the remains of John Curran home. Click here to read the entire FOX 13 Tampa Bay article and watch video of Alexander discussing how modern technology is the key to finding those still MIA from World War I.

Homefront Heroines: New Kids’ Book Explores Hidden Wartime History Of America's First Women Soldiers

The Brightwood Code book cover

Monica Hesse was deep in the writing trenches with another YA novel set in 1918 when the concept for The Brightwood Code first struck her. “Whenever I’m struggling with a piece of historical fiction, the answer is usually that I don’t understand the time period fully enough. I was talking about this with my husband, and he started doing research, too. He came to me and asked, ‘Well, have you thought about the Hello Girls?’ I’d never even heard of them; it was like a whole new chapter had been unlocked. It started from there.” Click here to read the entire article about this new book, and find out how the author wondered, “How have I been so immersed in this time period for so long, and there’s this aspect of history that I’ve never heard about?"

Quentin Roosevelt: The Only Son Of A U.S. President To Die In Combat Was A Fearless World War I Fighter Pilot

Quentin Roosevelt

Though many former Presidents of the United States (POTUS) have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, only two were military aviators. However, only one former POTUS endured the tragedy of losing a son during combat, and by cruel twist of fate (from an aviation history buff’s standpoint, that is), that lone lost son was a combat aviator. That President was Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt AKA “TR” (whose own heroic military service with the Rough Riders during the Spanish-American War predated the Wright Brothers’ first flight by five years), and his son in question was Quentin Roosevelt, a First World War fighter pilot. Click here to read the entire article, and learn how "Roosevelt had a knack for recklessness that had plagued him since childhood, that perhaps provided some degree of foreshadowing for his eventual untimely fate."

Women Veterans Alliance Calls For Passage Of Legislation Awarding Congressional Gold Medal To Hello Girls

Women Veterans Alliance

The Women Veterans Alliance, and organization committed to creating a community that Equips, Empowers, and Encourages women who have served our country, has asked its members, friends, and supporters to join the effort to secure a Congressional Gold Medal for America’s First Women Soldiers — the U.S. Army Women Telephone Operators (“Hello Girls”) of World War I. Click here to learn more, and find out how you can help bring this legislation to passage in Congress in 2024.

‘It Bucked Our Lads Up Wonderfully’: The Lightning-Quick Battle That Marked The Birth Of The US-Australia Military Alliance

U.S. and Australian troops WWI

While the AUKUS alliance is new, the Australian-American partnership is not. As Australians reflected on the sacrifices of their soldiers on ANZAC Day (April 25), it’s worth remembering the first time Australian and American troops joined forces in battle – in northern France, in the final year of the First World War. One of the important engagements would become known as the Battle of Hamel in northern France, when the Australian overall commander, Lt. General John Monash, spearheaded the first Australian-American attack in history. Monash organized the offensive for July 4, American Independence Day. Click here to read the whole story, and learn how the American supreme commander, General John Pershing, was not pleased with the idea of the attack.

Home Movie From 1917 Shows Fargo-Moorhead Amid WWI Patriotic Fervor

Fargo-Moorhead 1917

The date was April 23, 1917. About 2,000 people stood just across the avenue from today’s McDonalds at Eighth Street and Second Avenue South in Moorhead, ND. They were caught up in the patriotic fervor and excitement of what would come. Just 17 days earlier, the United States had formally entered World War I. While you can’t hear the sounds, or smell the smells of 1917, you can see the action in a home movie of the gathering shot back then by Moorhead’s Dr. E.W. Humphrey, a surgeon and amateur film buff. Click here to learn more about the event, the movie, and why the filmed celebration happened in the first place: America had just entered WWI, but clearly, the nation wasn’t ready.

How The US Navy Used World War I Ghost Ships To Practice Bombing

Ghost Ship

When World War I ended in 1918, the United States entered a relatively long period of peacetime — this period lasted until 1939. Combat aviation improved throughout and after WWI, and in the decades of peacetime that followed, bombardiers required extensive training to ensure they could properly aim at and hit their targets. For  the U.S. Navy, a lot of training went into hitting targets on the water. Click here to read how the U.S. Navy outfitted WWI warships with automation technologies that allowed bombers to practice bombing live targets in the form of ghost ships, which paid large dividends in WWII.

Michael Santoro:

Charles Craft: Sniper Of The “Big Red One”

Charles Elwood Craft uniform group

This is the uniform group of Charles Elwood Craft, an American sniper of the 1st Division who was maimed for life during the Aisne-Marne Offensive. The group includes his jacket, overseas cap, breeches, dog tag, army discharge, and a myriad of other original personal documents, newspaper clippings, and letters. Born in Memphis, TN, Craft was an artist all his life, working as a sign painter until his death. But click here to learn how, during World War I, Craft was also an artist with a 1903 Springfield Rifle with a 1912 Warner-Swasey Telescopic Musket Sight, and "a pioneer of American sharpshooting."

World War I News Digest May 2024


World War I was The War That Changed The World, and its impact on the United States continues to be felt over a century later, as people across the nation learn more about and remember those who served in the Great War. Here's a collection of news items from the last month related to World War I and America.

And You Have My Axe: The American Lumberjacks Of WWI

Legacy.com Honors Doughboy Foundation On Memorial Day 2024

NCA’s Cemetery Restoration Project Thrives

The Zimmermann Telegram: Mexico & Germany As WWI Allies?

French Cross At Brooklyn National Cemetery

‘Hello Girls’ Of World War I Quest For Veteran Recognition

J.P. Morgan’s Efforts To Push The U.S. Into WWI

Hotchkiss Revolving Cannon: The Machine Gun Approaches

18 Ways World War I Directly Shaped The Way We Live Now

Senate Speech: 1st. Presumptive Conditions For WWI Vets

25 Mind-Blowing World War I Facts That Shaped The World

Stabilizing Democracy: WWI And Women’s Suffrage

25 Interesting Things You Did Not Know About World War I

David Ingalls, US Navy Ace In WWI

Aircraft Weapons Of World War One

.30-06 M1918 American Chauchat – Doughboys Go To France

Remember Them All

Doughboy MIA for May 2024

Lieutenant Samuel Nord

A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Our Doughboy MIA this month is Lieutenant Samuel Nord, born on January 21st, 1892, in Rice Lake, Wisconsin. He studied at the University of Wisconsin for one year and later attended Officer training at Fort Sheridan, Illinois. In July 1918, he sailed to France as a 2nd Lieutenant with the 338th Infantry, 85th Division.

Upon arriving in France, he was transferred to Company “K”, 128th Infantry, 32nd Division, where he led his men in some of the fiercest fighting in the Oise-Aisne and Meuse-Argonne sectors. He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on November 3rd, 1918.

One week later, on November 10th, the third battalion of the 128th Infantry was operating near Lissey, France, advancing towards Peuvillers. Lieutenant Nord led his men toward German positions head-on through heavy bombardment and a thick wall of machine gun fire. The Germans counterattacked, and Lieutenant Nord was wounded by three machine gun bullets. Stretcher-bearers picked him up, but owing to the heavy bombardment, machine gun fire, and the quickly approaching Germans, the evacuation proved difficult.

Lieutenant Nord reportedly told the stretcher Bearers, “Boys! Drop me and save yourselves!”. They left him at his request, and he died.

Click to read Lt. Nord's whole story.

Would you like to be involved with solving the case of Lieutenant Samuel Nord, and all the other Americans still in MIA status from World War I? You can! Click here to make a tax-deductible donation to our non-profit organization today, and help us bring them home! Help us do the best job possible and give today, with our thanks.  Remember: A man is only missing if he is forgotten.

Merchandise from the Official
Doughboy Foundation WWI Store

Bugler-Poppy Commemorative Coin  

Bugler/Poppy Commemorative Coin

A great keepsake to commemorate 
Daily Taps at the National World War
One Memorial in Washington, DC.

  • A Doughboy.shop Exclusive Commemorative Coin
  • The double-sided design showcases the iconic Doughboy Bugler / Poppy design
  • Soft enamel color detailing
  • Measures 1 3/4″
  • Bronze alloy w/ nickel-silver finish
WWI Poppy Lapel Pin

Poppy Lapel Pin

  • Exclusive Commemorative WW1 Poppy Lapel Pin
  • Soft enamel color design
  • Approx. 1.5 inch in dia.
  • Standard military clasp

Proceeds from the sale of these items will help finish the new National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the Doughboy Foundation.

Gladstone Horace Yeuell

From the Stories of Service section of doughboy.org

Gladstone Horace Yeuell

Gladstone Horace Yeuell served in World War 1 with the United States Army. His dates of service are October 1917 to June 1919.

Chaplain Gladstone Yeuell served with the 313th Field Artillery during the final dramatic days of WWI. Yeuell reported for duty at Camp Lee in Petersburg, VA in November 1917. At a meeting with the regiment’s Colonel Herron, he learned his assigned duties were to “play with the Y.M.C.A., preach on Sunday morning, and persuade the men to like bad grub and tough quarters.” Little did he know that within one year the 313th Field Artillery would be in France, entrenched on the front lines for the duration of the largest offensive in U.S. Military history.

Chaplain Yeuell’s letters tell a personal story of joys, hardships, and victories. They crossed the Atlantic on an overcrowded ship, with an untrained crew through heavy fog. Once in France, they were stationed for training in Redon. Yeuell’s account of their march from Redon to Vannes illustrates his ability to keep morale high along the way:

Four days in the saddle, thru dust and sun, camping in the beautiful grassy pastures and getting up at four o’clock in the cool of the morning, and on, on moves the light artillery. Wonderful, but tiresome for man and beast. How good the grub tastes, how fine the few short hours of sleep.

Letters written from Vannes the last week in August 1918 hint that the 313th would soon be going to the front. They fought on the front lines of the San Mihiel Offensive from 12-15 September. From there they marched directly into the Meuse Argonne. The 313th, along with their Chaplain, were unrelieved throughout the entire 47 days.

On Armistice Day, 11 November 1918, Yeuell wrote, “Since the 25th of September I have been continually through flame, smoke, mud, dead beasts and men – thru Hell. The infantry, of course, would be relieved at regular intervals, but this regiment of mine, actually I believe the finest on the front, never ceased. In those two months and a half I have lived ten years, and yet, I would not have missed my part for anything. My hair is long and uncut. I am wearing the same shirt I started with. I have a peach of a moustache. I am lousy, dirty, and well… I am proud of my country as never before, proud of her manhood and womanhood, sorrowing with those who sorrow, rejoicing with those who rejoice.

Submit your family's Story of Service here.