Monthly Archives: May 2019

Honoring heroes this Memorial Day…

An item from the National Parks Foundation.

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Fredericksburg National Cemetery

Dear Michael,

This Memorial Day, we hope you will take a moment with us to reflect on the reason the holiday was created: to honor those who gave their lives in service to our country and, ultimately, to all of us. There are many national parks where you can learn about military history and remember those who fought and died for our country.

Known or unknown, each soldier’s life or death was meaningful to someone. Many historians cite May 1, 1865, as the first Memorial Day, when 10,000 individuals, mostly freed men and women, held a ceremony to honor the dead Union soldiers in Charleston, South Carolina. More formal commemorations grew from these early gatherings in both the North and the South.

By the 1890s, Memorial Day was a noteworthy holiday across much of the country, and the tradition has continued through the passing decades. Commemorations today range from simple ceremonies to elaborate displays, like the annual Fredericksburg National Cemetery Illumination, where 15,000 candles are lighted — one candle in honor of every soldier buried within its walls.

We hope you are able to visit a national park and honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country!


Katherine Chesson
Vice President, Programs and Partnerships

© 2019. All rights reserved. Photo credit: B. Parnicza, National Park Service

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Help us give the true meaning back to Memorial Day

An item from the Marines’ Memorial Association & Foundation.


Even though more than a decade has passed since Mike Anderson lost his son, not a day goes by when he doesn’t think about him. After two and a half years as a FAST Company Marine, Corporal Mike Anderson Jr. was killed in a gunfight during the Battle of Fallujah on December 14, 2004. He was just 21 years old.

As you know, our mission is to pay tribute to service members like Mike Jr., who gave their lives for our Country, and you are an integral part of accomplishing that mission.

Honor Their Sacrifice
For Gold Star families and parents like Mike Anderson, the Marines’ Memorial Club is a sacred space. Thanks to partners like you, we have created a Living Memorial where families can gather and reminisce, tell the stories of those who are no longer with them, and honor the sacrifices that gave us our freedoms.

Ensure that their memories live on. Your contribution in the following amounts will help us provide …
A piece of hospitality for Active Duty members
One care package for our troops overseas
Commemorations, including our annual USMC Birthday Ball
Contribute Now

We’re proud to say that 100% of your contribution will go directly to helping honor service members past and present and easing the burden for those currently serving and their families.

Over the last 70 years, the Marines’ Memorial has impacted tens of thousands of veterans, active military service members, military families and their communities. Will you help us continue this proud tradition by contributing online today?



Jan C. Huly
Lieutenant General, USMC (Ret)
President and CEO

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If your giving is restricted to 501(c)3 organizations, please consider a gift to Marines’ Memorial Foundation which supports all programs of the Marines’ Memorial Association. Please contact the Marines’ Memorial Development Department at development@marinesmemorial.orgfor more information.
The Marines’ Memorial Association’s 1946 charter established the Marines’ Memorial Club as the first “Living Memorial” in the United States, dedicated as a “tribute to those who have gone before; and to provide a service to those who carry on.”

Click here to take a digital tour now. >

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Marines’ Memorial Association & Foundation
609 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA 94102, 415.673.6672 Copyright © 2019, All rights reserved

Queen Victoria and the growth of Canada

An item from the Legion Magazine.

Military Milestones
Queen Victoria and the growth of Canada

Queen Victoria and the growth of Canada

Story by Sharon Adams

May 24 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Queen Victoria, during whose 63-year reign Canada moved from colony to confederation—mostly peacefully, thanks in large part to her.

Perhaps she was predisposed to fondness for the colony, as her father, Edward, Duke of Kent lived in Canada in the 1790s, eventually becoming commander-in-chief of the British North American forces. Prince Edward Island is named for him.

In 1837 and 1838, the years Victoria ascended to the throne and was crowned, bloody rebellion was quashed in the British colonies of Lower and Upper Canada (Quebec and Ontario today). Rebels, unhappy with the ruling elite, wanted more control over raising and spending of revenues in their colonies.


D-Day Addresses
Front Lines
The mighty word on D-Day

The mighty word on D-Day

Story by Stephen J. Thorne

The American employed soaring oratory in calling D-Day troops to “the Great Crusade.” The Brit summoned the words of a 17th-century soldier-poet as he urged the “team” on in their “great and righteous cause.”

The Canadian, on the other hand, reminded his troops of the “knowledge and experience bought and paid for” by brothers-in-arms who had gone down to abject defeat at Dieppe two years earlier.

The generals commanding Allied forces on D-Day took different tacks in their efforts to inspire soldiers boarding ships and aircraft bound for the greatest seaborne invasion the world has ever seen.


This week in history
This week in history

May 24, 1819

Queen Victoria is born at Kensington Palace.


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Legion Magazine

Save the Date: Canada Day in San Jose!

An item from a fellow Canadian organizations in the Bay Area.

Get ready for Canada Day celebrations around the Bay Area.
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Upcoming Events

Save the Date for Canada Day Celebrations!

Join the DML in downtown San Jose on June 27th to raise the Canadian flag outside City Hall, then head over to Uproar Brewing Co. for some fun and festivities with your fellow Canucks. This family-friendly event is open to all, but you must get tickets so we can plan a great party.
And for a second year in a row, you can bring a non-perishable item to donation to the Second Harvest Food Bank. #canadiansdoinggood

More Information >>

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WWI DISPATCH May 21, 2019

A newsletter from the World War One Centennial Commission.

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May 21, 2019

Fleet Week New York 2019

Commission activities honor America’s World War I Vets during Fleet Week 2019

UPDATED Navy Centennial Logo

The U.S. World War One Centennial Commission, in partnership with the U.S. Navy, will host a number of cultural activities, and commemorative events, during the U.S. Navy’s upcoming Fleet Week New York, from 22-27 May 2019. A full list of the WWI-related activities can be found at These events will help tell the story of the 4 million American men and women — many from the greater New York area — who stepped forward to serve during World War I, 100 years ago. Click here to read more about the World War I -related activities taking place during Fleet Week 2019 this week.

369th Experience

The 369th Experience Band, sponsored by the Centennial Commission, will be making several appearances during Fleet Week, including at Rockefeller Center on Saturday, May 25; at Liberty State Park in Jersey City on Sunday, May 26; and leading the the annual Memorial Day Parade in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn on Monday, May 27. Click here to find out more details and times for these performances by the fabulous 369th Experience.

Stubby AKC clip

In the run-up to Fleet Week in New York City this week, The American Kennel Club’s Museum of the Dog will unveil the official bronze statue of Sgt. Stubby, a distinguished World War I war dog, which will be housed permanently at the AKC Museum of the Dog. The sculpture will be unveiled on May 23. Commissioner Dr. Libby O’Connell of the United States World War I Centennial Commission will perform the unveiling.  Click here to read more about the sculpture, the sculptor, and how Stubby earned his recognition at the Museum of the Dog.

Fall start envisioned for WWI tribute; concept for monument in D.C.‘really coming along,’ says Arkansas designer

Memorial Detail 5192019 Arkansas Gazette

The Arkansas Democrat Gazette newspaper this week published an update on the progress of the National World War I Memorial in Washington, DC. The article noted that “supporters of the new World War I Memorial say they’re hopeful they can break ground this fall.” “We’re getting close to wrapping up the design. We’re about 75% of the way through,” said Joseph Weishaar, the project’s architect and a Fayetteville native. “It’s really coming along.” Click here to read the entire article in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette newspaper.

In search of Roman’s ‘lost boys’ of WWI


Roman Catholic High School in Philadelphia, PA was founded by Irish immigrant Thomas Cahill in 1890, and was the first free Catholic high school in the country. By the time the United States had entered World War I in 1917, the school was already more than a quarter-century old. Yet many alumni, including writer Chris Gibbons, had long assumed that there was no commemorative plaque for World War I because no Roman alumni had died in that war. However, as Gibbon’s interest and knowledge of the Great War deepened over the years, he began to doubt this assumption. After he read James Nelson’s book The Remains of Company D, Gibbons resolved to finally learn the truth regarding World War I and the lost boys from Roman. Click here to read how this search unfolded, and how the names of the lost boys of Roman are being rediscovered and honored 100 years after the end of World War I.

Filmmaker Daniel Bernardi and his historical documentary series for the National Cemetery Administration

Daniel Bernardi

Daniel Bernardi is a remarkable young filmmaker, and a very busy person. He is a Navy Reservist, a professor of film at San Francisco State University, and he manages a film production company specializing in documentaries. Daniel’s current project, as a filmmaker, is a series of pieces for the National Cemetery Administration (NCA), which manages the nation’s veteran cemeteries across the United States. These National Cemeteries are amazing historical sites, and are home some of America’s greatest military heroes. — In fact — The Centennial Commission worked with the NCA for the Wreath Laying Ceremony for World War I heroes buried in NYC’s Cypress Hills National Cemetery on May 2nd. Daniel’s biggest film of this series, the WWI-themed WAR TO END ALL WARS, premiered recently at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, and will be screened there during Memorial Day Weekend. Much of the new video work done by Daniel and his team can be found on their YouTube channel. Recently we took some time to talk to Daniel about his work, and hear his thoughts on why these stories are important; click here to read the entire interview.

Indiana exhibit to highlight World War I veterans’ shrine rededication

Indiana exhibit snip

An exhibit chronicling World War I will be one highlight of this year’s Memorial Day weekend rededication of Fort Wayne’s Veterans National Memorial Shrine and Museum in Indiana. The Shrine is a recipient of a 100 Cities/100 Memorialsgrant. Info on the restoration project for this memorial can be found here. 100 Cities/100 Memorials is a joint program of the United States World War I Centennial Commission and the Pritzker Military Museum and Library. Click here to read more about the Shrine and the “The Great War: From Ration Lines to the Front Lines” traveling exhibit curated by the Indiana Historical Society.

Gone but no longer forgotten: At long last, these four World War I veterans receive a memorial service

No Longer forgotten

The cremated remains of four World War I veterans were transported in a horse-drawn carriage, accompanied by Patriot Guard Riders and a police escort, to their final resting place at the Roseburg National Cemetery Annex in Douglas County, Oregonlast week. The veterans’ remains were forgotten on a shelf at a local mortuary before being rediscovered through the painstaking research of Douglas County Veterans Forum member Carol Hunt and retired Roseburg National Cemetery technician Gigi Grimes Shannon. What the two women found was one of the largest groups of unclaimed veterans remains ever to have been recovered in the state. Click here to read this extraordinary story of a dogged pursuit for justice for these four World War I veterans.

Fort Des Moines exhibit honors African-American men who served in WWI

Des Moines

Over a century ago, the first African-American officers trained at Fort Des Moines. On May 4, local members of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity unveiled a display honoring members who received their commissions there in 1917 and served during World War I. The Fort Des Moines training camp was the first and only established for African-American officers and non-commissioned candidates. What began as a simple question  — “Did Phi Beta Sigma have any members who were commissioned here” — turned into a three-year project that uncovered 20 men from the fraternity who served in WWI, including nine who received their commissions at Fort Des Moines. Click here to read the entire story about the search, the ceremony, and what the fraternity learned about its World War I heritage as a result.

From the World War I Centennial News Podcast

Richard “Corky” Erie and Beth Baker
on Fleet Week 2019 in NYC

Fleet Week 2019 logo

In May 10th’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 121, host Theo Mayer interviewed Richard “Corky” Erie and Beth Baker about Fleet Week New York. Richard is the director of Fleet Week New York, and Beth is the Director of Public Affairs for the Navy in the Mid-Atlantic and Fleet Week New York. The two of them have plenty to say about the logistics, scale, operation, and impact of Fleet Week on the city- as well as how this year’s event incorporates World War I. Click here to read the entire interview, and get an inside look at what it takes to bring “12 to 14 Navy and Coast Guard ships carrying upwards of 2,600 Sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen to all five boroughs of New York City, executing over 130 events in six days.”

Centennial News Now:
Tom Frezza on the USS Recruit 

Tom Frezza

In May 3rd’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 121, host Theo Mayer interviewed Tom Frezza, Director of Education at the National Museum of the US Navy. Mr. Frezza spoke in-depth about the USS Recruit, a full-scale battleship replica built in New York City in 1917 to encourage people to join the Navy — and they were able to recruit over 25,000 men into service! Click here to read the entire story about the great wooden “land ship” that sent sailors all over the planet while never leaving Manhattan.

100 Years Ago This Week: The Tragic Death of James Reese Europe

James Reese Europe

In May 3rd’s edition of the World War I Centennial News Podcast, Episode 121, host Theo Mayer reviewed some of the most important headlines from this week, 100 years ago. Among them was the death of James Reese Europe, the legendary African American band leader of the 369th Infantry Band. Already famous as an innovator and an advocate for Black musicians in New York, he’s often credited for bringing Jazz to France with the 369th.  He was tragically murdered in an altercation with a bandmate. Click here to read the contemporary story of the death of a military and musical legend 100 years ago.

WWI Centennial NEWS Podcast

Podcast Logo New

The WW1 Centennial News Podcast is about WW1 THEN: 100 years ago this week, and it’s about WW1 NOW: News and updates about the centennial and the commemoration.  Available on our web siteiTunesGoogle Play, PodbeanTuneInStitcher Radio on Demand.  Spotify  listen on Youtube. New – Comment and ask questions via twitter @TheWW1podcast

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Episode #123
Highlights: Remembering WWI Veterans

Host: Theo Mayer

Germany Agrees to Sign Peace Treaty – Mike Shuster | @ 02:15

100 Years Ago: The Treaty and the League as Viewed in America – Host | @ 06:50

War Memoirs From WWI: “Will Bird”  – Dr. Edward Lengel | @ 13:10

Back Over There: Italian Immigrants Serving in WWI – Luca Angeli | @ 18:50

Fleet Week New York 2019: The Site, the Events and the Social Media – Host | @ 27:15

Living Historians from the Cutter Olympia – Laura Adie & Kevin Smith | @ 28:10

“The Hello Girls Musical” Releases Cast Album – Cara Reichel, Peter Mills & Ben Moss | @ 37:15

Articles & Posts: Highlights from Dispatch – Host | @ 46:50

Literature in WWI This Week

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Waking Up to History: John Dos Passos, the Cut-up, and World War I

By M.C. Armstrong

When M.C. Armstrong traveled to Iraq as a war reporter, he took with him the work of WWI volunteer ambulance driver and American novelist, John Dos Passos. Like Dos Passos did in 1919, Armstrong came back and began to assert his own theory of war writing based on lessons learned.

In this post, Armstrong analyzes language as a weapon in war through the ways Dos Passos criticizes journalism using fiction. Read Waking Up to History: John Dos Passos, the Cut-up, and World War I, which discusses the war propaganda machine and Dos Passos’ signature “cut up” technique at WWrite this week!

Behind Their Lines

behind their lines

Over 1.7 million American doughboys were sent to Europe to serve in the First World War.

Read one soldier’s account of the loneliness men felt on over-crowded ships as they headed towards the Great War. The writer, John Allan Wyeth, is considered one of the finest American combat poets of the war.

Official WWI Centennial Merchandise

Lest We Forget jacket

“Lest We Forget: The Great War”

World War I Prints from the Pritzker Military Museum & Library 

As the United States commemorates the centennial of World War I, one of the nation’s premier military history institutions pays tribute to the Americans who served and the allies they fought beside to defeat a resourceful enemy with a lavishly illustrated book.  It is an official product of the Unites States World War One Centennial Commission. The story of WWI is told through the memorable art it spawned ― including posters from nations involved in the conflict ― and a taut narrative account of the war’s signal events, its major personalities and its tragic consequences; and the timely period photographs that illustrate the awful realities of this revolutionary conflict. Most importantly, this book is a tribute to those who served in the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and what would become the Air Force. It serves as a lasting reminder that our world ignores the history of World War I (and the ensuing WWII) at its peril ― lest we forget.  Proceeds help fund the WW1 Memorial in Washington, DC.

This and many other items are available as Official Merchandise of the United States World War One Centennial.

Grace Banker

100 years ago this week, “Hello Girl” Grace Banker received the Distinguished Service Medal for her service “with exceptional ability as Chief Operator in the Signal Corps Exchange at General Headquarters, American Expeditionary Forces and later in a similar capacity at First Army Headquarters.” Banker’s granddaughter Carolyn Timbie takes a look back at Banker’s remarkable military service in World War I; click here to read the entire article.

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John A. Dean

A Story of Service from the Stories of Service section of

John A Dean

Submitted by: Elmer J Bott, Jr. {Legion Post Adjutant} 

John A Dean born around 1893, John Dean served in World War 1 with the United States Army. The enlistment was in 1917 and the service was completed in 1918.

Story of Service

John A. Dean was born about 1893, his mother Anna (Kelly) Dean and William Dean were residents of Butler.

John A. Dean enlisted August 31, 1917 in the Ambulance Co #33, which trained at the Van Wyck estate bordering on Lake Apshawa. He then traveled to Syracuse, New York, Allentown, Pennsylvania and lastly Camp Greene, Charlotte, North Carolina for further training.

At Camp Greene his company was incorporated into the 4th Division Regular Army. They left the United States for service overseas on May 13, 1918. In whole or part he served at Belleau Wood, Chateau Thierry, and the Aisne-Marne offensive, St. Mihiel, the Meuse Argonne in France and in the Army of Occupation in Germany.

Read John A. Dean’s entire Story of Service here.

Submit your family’s Story of Service here.