Monday, May 23, 2016

The last of the World War One Veteran's in Greater Lowell

I've been researching World War One and Greater Lowell for quite a few years now. In 2011 Frank Buckles passed away and he was noted as being the last U.S. veteran of World War One. With the 100th anniversary coming up, I'm trying to determine who were the last surviving veterans of WW1 from Greater Lowell.

In 1993 the U.S. Veteran's Administration funded by the Robert R. McCormick Tribune Foundation awarded 75th anniversary medals to surviving veterans of World War One. It was estimated that only 1 percent of the veterans of this war were still alive. Nine thousand medals were awarded in total.

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Robert R. McCormick was the editor and the publisher of the Chicago Tribune. Col. McCormick was the Commander of 1st Battalion of the 5th Field Artillery of First Division in the U.S. Army during World War One. Colonel McCormick died in 1955 and his will funded the Tribune Foundation.

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Veteran's or their families had to prove their military service during World War One to the Veteran's Administration. The awards were presented to the following Greater Lowell veterans:

Demetrios "Jimmy" Banacos
Alphonse Brule
Merle Hamilton
Joseph Leo Rivet

If anyone knows of any other Greater Lowell veteran that was awarded this medal please let me know. Over the course of the week I will be giving information on each veteran about their life and their service.

We thank them and remember them.

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