Sons of Men - Evansville's War Record
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Pvt. John Webster
Medical Department, 1st Corps Artillery Park
December 9, 1889 - November 3, 1918


   The Spanish Influenza proved more dangerous to John Webster
than the great variety of Hun missiles, which he escaped on the
battlefield.

   He was born December 9, 1889, in Evansville. His education was
received at the Centennial School, and in the local high school which,
however, he did not complete. While he was still in school he worked
in a tin shop in the evening and on Saturday. When he left school he
was a sheet metal worker, but he attended night school to learn
pattern making.

   The day of his enlistment was February 28, 1918.  He remained
but two days at Ft. Oglethorpe, Ga., where he was in the Medical
Corps. Then he was transferred to Columbus, S. C. On May 20, 1918.
he left for France and on Decoration Day he landed at Brest. The
exposure to inclement weather lowered his power of resistance
so that he was afflicted with the Spanish Influenza.  He died
November 3, 1918.

   A letter which appeared in the Evansville Courier,
January 22, 1919, tells of the experiences of John Webster and
several other 'Evansville soldiers. The letter follows:
     "But all the real fighting divisions are here,
      including 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 26, 32, 42, 89 and 90,
      so you may know we will make some excitement when
      we do get home. Here's hoping it won't be long.

     "We get our Couriers regularly, but a little late.
      We sure enjoy every line of them.

     "JOHN E. SITZMAN, LOUIS R. BOHRER, EDWARD J. MENTZEL,
      0. VERNON WELDEN, FRED A. HEEGER, E. W. JANDE.
      BEAUR, AND A. S. MOUTICHKA.

   James W. Mellon, first sergeant of the Medical Detachment,
writing to John Webster's mother from Pfaffendorf, Germany,
May 11, 1919, describes his courageous service, and good influence on
All who came in contact with him. "John was a good comrade and
soldier." the letter said, "and although I know you can but feel a deep
sense of loss; yet, you can be proud your son never failed in his
ideals, and met the supreme test in the true spirit of a soldier,
faithful to the last.

   "The influence of his life upon the lives of his comrades will
always live, and there will always be a tender spot in the heart of all
of us who were privileged to serve beside him. We can be consoled
in the thought that his life has not been lived in vain, and look for-
ward to that day when comes that happy reunion in that fairer world
where there are no wars, but eternal peace and happiness."
_____

Sons of Men: Evansville's War Record,
Compiled by Heiman Blatt,
Published by Abe P. Madison, 1920
pp183-184.

cdmyers@wowway.com
October 25, 1998