Sons of Men - Evansville's War Record
Gold Star Biographies
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Pvt. Ora L. Perry
Co. E, 18th division, 1st Division
May 5, 1890 - October 9, 1918


     Ora L. Perry's part in the war can he judged by the official
citation, "For Gallantry In Action and Especially Meritorious Services"
in the Meuse-Argonne offensive.  He was a member of the First Division,
of which G.0. 201, November 10, 1918 said: "The Commander-in-Chief has
noted in this Division a special pride of service and a high state of
morale never broken by hardship nor battle."

     He was born May 5, 1890, at Dawson Springs. Ky.  When he was
two years of age his family moved to Mayfield. Ky., and three years
later to Henderson, Ky.  In this town he attended public school until
he was in the sixth grade, when he left school to help his mother
support the family.  As an apprentice he learned the tinner's trade.
In 1909 he came to Evansville and joined the union and secured
employment as a sheet metal worker.  His last position before entering
service was with the Ohio Valley Roofing Company.

     He entered the service of his country on April 29, 1918. At Camp
Taylor he was assigned to the Twenty-fourth Company, Sixth Training
Battalion, 159th Depot Brigade. On the fourth of June he was
transferred to Co. D, 337th Infantry, Camp Custer, Battle Creek,
Mich.  During the first week in July he was transferred to Camp
Mills, and July 20, 1918, he began his voyage across the Atlantic.
One week later Perry landed "somewhere in England."  He characterized
his trip and experiences as an "adventurous time."  While he was in
England he received the following copy of a greeting from King
George to the American troops:
     "Soldiers of the United States, the people of the British Isles
welcome you on your way to take your stand beside the Armies of
many nations now fighting in the Old World, the great battle for
human freedom.

     "The Allies will gain new heart and spirit in your company.
I wish that I could shake the hand of each one of you and bid you
God speed on your mission.
       "GEORGE R. I."

     On August 25, he was transferred to Co. E, 18th Infantry.  His
desire to spare his mother anxiety made him very reticent.  He wrote
that his organization was continually moving from one French camp
to another.

     The official notice to his mother stated that Ora L. Perry died
on October 9, 1918, from "wounds received in action."  No word from
the Chaplain, officers, or comrades has been received, but it is
supposed that he received the wounds in the Argonne Forest.
_____

Sons of Men: Evansville's War Record,
Compiled by Heiman Blatt,
Published by Abe P. Madison, 1920
pp. 152-153

cdmyers@wowway.com
October 25, 1998