World War I Centennial Approaches: April, 2017

by Rick Winterson

The World War I Commemoration Committee has completed its third meeting at the Fitzgerald VFW Post. Many plans and events are underway. The first such event at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 29, will commemorate the Fallen Heroes of World War I. It will be held at South Boston High School.
Were you aware there is a large pictorial memorial of South Boston’s World War I Fallen Heroes – 101 of those brave soldiers, who were killed in action before World War I ended on Armistice Day in 1918?? The memorial is located in the hall outside of the South Boston High School auditorium.
One hundred years ago, in April of 1917, President Woodrow Wilson asked Congress for permission to declare war on Kaiser Wilhelm’s Germany, after German submarine attacks resulted in the sinking of England’s RMS Lusitania, as well as danger to American ships. Hence the date of April 29 – it’s an observance of the Centennial marking America’s entry into “The War to end all Wars”.
Details will be announced soon. Please plan to attend this Saturday morning observance. And watch for further announcements about a possible nighttime observance out-of-doors, on April 28 at the Evacuation Day Memorial on Dorchester Heights.
The following is the first group of Fallen Heroes’ names on South Boston High School’s Memorial. South Boston Online plans to publish all 101 names of these heroes between now and the centennial event on Saturday morning, April 29.
PLEASE get in touch with South Boston Online if you have any information, stories, or pictures to share about the Fallen Heroes names we will publish each week until April 29. See the first part of that list below, and THANK YOU in advance.
ANDREWS, David J.
ARMSTRONG, Arthur Sullivan
AUSTIN, Thomas Arthur
BAXTER, Arthur
BIBLE, Herbert Francis
BUCKLEY, Joseph Jeremiah
BURNS, Arthur Wade
BURNS, Lawrence Joseph

WWI hero Thomas Fitzgerald’s portrait centers the display case at the Fitzgerald VFW post No. 561, which is named for him.
The central plaque of the World War I Memorial outside the auditorium at the South Boston high School – “May the memory of their sacrifice … be enshrined forever …”

Jeanne Rooney

Jeanne Rooney is the Editor in Chief for South Boston Online.

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