Thursday, October 4, 2007

Earl Koester (1897-1919)

Son of Simon P. and Ida G. Koester; born December 22, 1897, Wauseon, Ohio. Moved to Fulton county, Ind.; then to Whitley County, Ind., about 1910. Clerk. Enlisted in Aviation Service, March 5, 1918, Indianapolis. Sent to Kelly Field, Tex.; then to Taylor Field, Ala. Assigned to Post Exchange. Died of appendicitis May 11, 1919, Camp Sheridan, Ala. Buried at Grass Creek, Fulton County, Ind.
Gold Star Honor Roll: A Record of Indiana Men and Women Who Died in The Service of the United States and The Allied Nations in The World War 1914-1918 (Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Commission, 1921) Page 719. Contributed by Meredith Thompson.
Columbia City Post ~ Wednesday, May 14, 1919
Universal remarks of regret were heard on every hand in this city Tuesday when it became known that Earl Koester had died at Camp Sheridan, Alabama, Sunday evening, at 9 o’clock, following an acute attack of appendicitis, for the young man was very well known here and comparatively few people realized that he was dangerously ill.
He had been seriously sick for about two weeks. A week ago his brother, Walter Koester, of North Chauncey street, left for Camp Sheridan, and he was with him when the end came. The deceased was a son of Rev. S. P. Koester and wife, formerly of this city, but now live in Indian Village, in Noble county, and besides his parents and brother mentioned, he is survived by three sisters, who live at Grass Creek, Ind.
Earl had been in the service more than a year and a half, having volunteered. He did not get across and he was used in office work at Camp Sheridan. He was a remarkably fine scholar and graduated from the high school here with the class of 1915, being the president of the senior class. In his school life he took a prominent part. He entered the high school in the fall of 1911. He soon became identified with the basket ball and track team and he was secretary of the high school athletic association for a while. He was a member of his class debating team in 1913, 1914 and 1915, and he was a young man on whom responsibilities could be placed and they would not be neglected.
He felt a high sense of duty always and he was honorable and reliable in all things. Only words of praise could be spoken of his character and he was one of the finest young men who received his education in the schools here. His classmates and friends alike feel a deep personal loss in his passing and all join in a common sympathy with those who are nearest and dearest to him.
He worked for nearly a year in the Frank Meitzler drug store and Mr. Meitzler characterized him as a young man full of ambition, proud and anxious to make good in the world. When the war came on, he felt that his first and most sacred duty was to his country and he voluntarily offered his services. That he should fall a victim to appendicitis is indeed very sad and he was but 22 years, 4 months and 19 days old at the time of his demise.
The remains will be taken to Grass Creek, Ind., for burial, but the time of the funeral was not known by friends here Tuesday.

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