Sons of Men - Evansville's War Record
Gold Star Biographies
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Pvt. William Joseph Lappe
Casualty Detachment, Second Battalion
January 29, 1893 -October 3, 1918

     Success in modern warfare is not due only to military
operations on the battlefield.  Modern warfare is the resultant
of an interrelation of co-operative activities.  One branch of
the army can not succeed without the support of other units,
and the success of the whole depends on whether every person in
the service is doing his whole duty.   Military strategists have
realized that it is difficult to say which phase of the service
is important, and which is unimportant.  William Lappe was not able
to do active military service, but disinclined to lead life of ease
and indolence, he made repeated efforts to do what he could in the
national crisis, and so proving himself a "man who does not shrink
from danger, from hardship, or from bitter toil, and who out of these
wins the splendid ultimate triumph."

     He was born in this city January 29, 1893.  Until the age of
fifteen he attended the Trinity Catholic School.  His business
training was received at the Draughon-Porter Business College, and
upon completion of his course he was employed by the Evansville
Brewing Association as a bookkeeper. He was engaged in this work
continuously for ten years.

     William Lappe responded to the call of his country. He offered
himself for service, but after five medical examinations he was
rejected because of a double fracture of the right arm.  The rejection
for active service, however, did not daunt him.  Seeing many of his
friends and acquaintances entering the various branches of service
and helping in the common cause, he made still another effort to do
his bit, and was finally accepted in limited service.

     On August 5, 1918, he left for Syracuse, N.Y., where he was
engaged in clerical work for four weeks.  He was then transferred to
the Casualty Detachment, Second Battalion, at Edgewood, Md.  At this
camp he worked as a bookkeeper for a month when he was afflicted with
Spanish Influenza.  On Thursday, October 1, 1918, his father received
a telegram, telling of his son's illness.  The anxious father
immediately departed for Edgewood, Md., and saw his son.  On
October 3, 1918, William Lappe died after an illness of five days.
His body was brought to Evansville and buried in the St. Joseph

     His loss was felt by many people in Evansville.  His pleasing
personality gained him friendships in various activities.  During the
ten years of his work he established an intimacy with his fellow
workers, which is highly prized in the business world. He was an
active member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, various Catholic
societies, and of the Eagles' lodge.

Sons of Men: Evansville's War Record,
Compiled by Heiman Blatt,
Published by Abe P. Madison, 1920
pp. 100-101
October 25, 1998