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100th anniversary of first soldier from Minnesota's Blue Earth County killed in WWI 

By Tim Krohn
via the Mankato Free Press (MN) web site

Glenn H CampbellGlenn H. Campbell of St. Clair was one of the first in the area to enlist when World War I started and was the first soldier from Blue Earth County to be killed in the war. Tuesday, Feb. 27, marked the 100th anniversary of his death.President Woodrow Wilson called on Congress to declare war against Germany on April 2, 1917, and less than a month later, a young man named Glenn H. Campbell of St. Clair became one of the first in Blue Earth County to volunteer to serve.

Ten months later, he would be the first serviceman from the county to be killed in World War I. Tuesday, February 27 marked the 100th anniversary of his death.

County Veteran Service Officer Michael McLaughlin happened upon the anniversary recently.

"We have old books and records here, and I was going through this book and just ran across it," McLaughlin said.

The book, "The Story of Blue Earth County’s Part in the Great Struggle for Democracy,” published by The Free Press in 1920, tells Campbell's story.

On the day after enlisting, Campbell was sent to Jefferson Barracks. He served with the Fourth company of the Artillery corps until July 26, when he was transferred to his final post with the Ammunition Train.

He boarded the transport Antilles on Aug. 7 from New York to France and was one of the earliest American troops to land on European shores.

After spending time in winter quarters from November to January, Campbell was stationed at Sanzey for the first few months of 1918. To get to the front, which was just a short distance away, the ammunition train passed through a bend in the road known as “Dead Man’s Curve” because of the fact that several men had been killed there.

On Feb. 27, Campbell, an assistant truck driver on a machine driven by a young man named Sullivan, was proceeding to the front when, just as the truck was rounding the curve, a shrapnel shell struck the roadside and exploded. Part of the shell tore away the radiator of the truck, striking Campbell in the side and passing through his body.

Read the entire article on the Mankato Free Press web site:

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