In Memoriam

Saluting The Military Service of All Our Alumni and Faculty
And Remembering Those Who Have Made The Ultimate Sacrifice

Veterans Day (November 11), originally known as Armistice Day, salutes all honorably discharged military veterans of the United States Armed Forces. The first Armistice Day was declared by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919, marking the end of major World War I hostilities at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. Armistice Day was renamed Veterans Day in June 1954 through a bill signed into law by President Dwight D. Eisenhower nine years after a World War II veteran, Raymond Weeks, conceived the idea of expanding the remembrance to celebrate all veterans, not only those who died in World War I.

Through the years, hundreds of St. Louis Country Day School, Mary Institute, and MICDS alumni have proudly worn the uniforms of our nation’s Armed Forces. They have served with distinction throughout the world, in times of war and in peacetime. As part of our school’s annual Veterans Day observance, we also pause to gratefully remember the 33 members of our community who perished while in military service during the World War II, Korean, or Vietnam eras. They include 26 alumni lost during World War II, four of them among the 36 graduates in the Class of 1941. Recognition of the lives of these fallen heroes helps sharpen our understanding of textbook accounts of military actions that now seem long ago and far away. As these biographical sketches suggest, in decades past as students, those profiled also struggled through exams and gazed out the classroom window, anticipating the Burroughs game or what life held for them. Their dreams and aspirations were sacrificed so that members of future generations might realize theirs.

Today, and indeed every day, we honor these fallen heroes—and all military veterans—with pride, honor, and respect.

Yeoman 2nd Class John Dwight Bridge '37

U.S. Navy, World War II

Bridge attended Country Day in 1934-35, graduated from Westminster College, and was an accomplished violinist. He was listed as missing on June 4, 1943, when his submarine-chaser ship was torpedoed by an Italian sub in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Bizerte, Tunisia. His military awards included the Purple Heart.

Captain Henri Chouteau Jr. '36

Royal Canadian Air Force, World War II

Chouteau was a captain and pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force Ferry Command that flew military aircraft from North America to allies in Europe. He died in an aviation accident in the spring of 1943. He attended Country Day from 1928 to 1933 and was an outstanding athlete in football, basketball, and track.

Lieutenant René Auguste Chouteau '39

U.S. Marine Corps, World War II

A member of the U.S. Marines Flying Corps, Chouteau was killed in an accident at Pensacola, Florida, on August 6, 1944. He attended Country Day in 1934-35, playing Middle School football, and later he was enrolled in Yale University. His brother, Henri ’36, died in the war a year earlier.

Corporal Judson B. Conant '42

U.S. Marine Corps, World War II

Conant saw action in the campaigns waged for the islands of Saipan and Guam and was killed in action on April 15, 1945. While at Country Day from 1936 to 1940, he played football and baseball, was a member of the school chorus, and was active in Boy Scouts.

1st Lieutenant Grant R. “Tubby” Ellis, CDS Faculty

U.S. Marine Corps, Korea

Killed by a sniper on September 30, 1950, after being recalled to active duty from the Marine Corps Reserves. He taught English and math in the Lower School starting in 1948, and he served as head football coach under his father-in-law, Robert “Pop” Hughes. Ellis Field is named in his memory.

Colonel John Rison Fordyce Jr. '23

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Fordyce attended CDS in 1917-18. He died May 23, 1943, when an engine of his B-26 bomber exploded on takeoff in North Africa. A Harvard graduate, he became a Navy pilot and later joined the Air National Guard. He was a second-term Arkansas State Representative when called to active duty in 1941.

Captain John D. “Sisky” Franciscus '25

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Franciscus died in an airplane crash in Maine in May 1942. Nicknamed “Sisky,” he attended CDS from 1919 to 1922. He was an honor student and a member of some of the school’s first interscholastic athletic teams, including football, basketball, tennis, and baseball.

1st Lieutenant James Everett Fraser '35

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

A member of the 15th Air Force of the U.S. Army, Fraser was killed in action when his bomber exploded over Austria on May 29, 1944. At CDS, he was the circulation manager of the student newspaper and a member of the Masque drama organization. He also earned varsity letters in soccer and baseball.

Ensign George B. Gannett Jr. '37

U.S. Navy, World War II

Gannett attended Country Day School from 1929 to 1933. While at CDS, he was consistently an honor student and was a member of the Glee Club. He died of wounds suffered on a destroyer in the Pacific on December 26, 1943. He is buried in Manila, the Philippines.

Lieutenant Edward Chase Garvey '41

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Garvey was killed in action over Austria on February 7, 1945, after being freed from a German POW camp. He earned the Air Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster. He was a member of the undefeated 1940 Country Day basketball team, where his teammates included Carl Lawton ’41 and Don Oonk ’40, also war casualties.

Captain Michael P. Getlin '57

U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam

Getlin was killed on March 30, 1967, in Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam. Already wounded, he died retrieving two enemy grenades while moving his men to safer ground. He was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross for extraordinary heroism on a hill known afterward as “Getlin’s Corner.”

Cadet Scott Pope Hawkins '28

U.S. Navy, World War II

On January 6, 1938, as war drew near, U.S. Naval Aviator Hawkins died when the seaplane he piloted took a sudden dive during a search off of San Diego, California, for a missing Navy bomber crew. During his three years at CDS starting in 1922, his activities included football, soccer, and basketball.

Private 1st Class John Francis Hennessey III '53

U.S. Marine Corps, Korea

Hennessey was killed in an auto accident near Clarksville, Tennessee, while returning to his Marine Corps base after 1954 Thanksgiving leave. At CDS, he won the Harvard Cup for excellence in athletics, was All-ABC League in football for two years and baseball for one year. He also played basketball and was in Troubadours and Glee Club.

Lieutenant Alfred H. Herman II '40

U.S. Army, Korea

Herman attended CDS 1935-40. A West Point graduate, he was killed in action on May 18, 1951. Three months earlier, he had led a Ranger unit that routed two Chinese Communist regiments in Korea. He previously served with the 11th Airborne Division in Japan before commanding the Rangers.

Corporal Waldo Clark Jackman Jr. '41

U.S. Army, World War II

Jackman died in a collision at sea on March 13, 1945, when his transport was rammed and sunk by a French aircraft carrier. At CDS, he was one of the school’s best science students. As part of his military service, he had been sent to various engineering schools, including Carnegie Institute of Technology, before going overseas.

Corporal Carl S. Lawton Jr. '41

U.S. Army, World War II

Lawton was killed in action in France on September 23, 1944. He served as a Technical Corporal in a U.S. Army Ranger battalion. At CDS, he earned 13 varsity letters, including five in one year, and he was on the undefeated 1940 basketball team. He also was twice class president and on the student council.

Staff Sergeant Donald C. McCord Jr. '31

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

McCord was killed in action in the Pacific on August 7, 1942. In 1941, McCord had nearly died when his bomber crashed in the Pacific. He floated three days in a raft with his crew, their only food an albatross he shot with his pistol. He earned the Air Medal for valor. At CDS, he was a soccer player, and he fenced.

2nd Lieutenant Stratford Lee Morton Jr. '31

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Morton died on June 21, 1941, when the Army A-20 bomber he was piloting crashed near LaGrange, Georgia, in a violent storm after bombing practice at Ft. Benning. At CDS, he starred in football, soccer, wrestling, and track. He was also on Yale’s 1934 “iron man” football team, playing in five entire consecutive games without relief.

Lieutenant Edward T. Noland Jr. '36

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Noland was killed when he was shot down over Italy on November 18, 1944. He received the Distinguished Flying Cross for extraordinary achievement as a B-25 bombardier in a September 1944 attack and an Air Medal with Silver Oak Leaf Cluster for precision bombing during six July-August 1944 attacks. At CDS, he earned football, soccer, baseball, and track letters.

Lieutenant Donald Alfred Oonk '40

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Oonk was killed when his damaged bomber crashed in Yugoslavia on December 2, 1944. At CDS, he played football and was a starter on the undefeated 1940 basketball team. At MICDS today, the Oonk Awards honor Middle School achievements in eighth-grade boys sports.

Lieutenant Walter Lewis Pfeffer Jr. '35

U.S. Army, World War II

Pfeffer died on July 7, 1944, when his heavy bomber crashed near Lorraine, Kansas. During his five years at CDS, he worked on the business staff of the newspaper and as a yearbook writer. His athletic awards included letters in football, wrestling, and track.

Pvt. 1st Class Christopher Podmaniczky '64

U.S. Marine Corps, Vietnam

Podmaniczky was killed by small arms fire on April 21, 1967, with 38 other Marines in an ambush by a dug-in Viet Cong force in the village of Bihn Son, Quang Nam Province, South Vietnam. He was 20 years old. A Country Day School student from 1956 through 1960, his activities included playing on the “B” tennis team.

2nd Lieutenant James A. Sevin '45

U.S. Air Force, Korea

Sevin was killed when his malfunctioning jet fighter crashed north of Anchorage, Alaska, on March 31, 1953. Radar observer in a two-man crew, he apparently ejected too close to the ground. He was on the yearbook staff at CDS, where he played football and baseball. He went on to graduate from Harvard in 1949.

Corporal Willard B. Shelp III '42

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

A radio operator on a U.S. Army Air Ferrying Command plane, Shelp was accidentally killed in the line of duty in Egypt on September 16, 1944. After four years at Country Day School, he went almost immediately into the Army. At CDS, he earned a varsity football letter and two numerals in soccer and track.

Corporal David R. Small '32

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Small died on October 29, 1943, on the Island of Trinidad. Entering Country Day in Class 6 (7th grade), he left school in 1931, just before his senior year. While at CDS, he was active in drama organizations. He graduated from Princeton University in 1937, attended the University of Michigan Law School, and was married in 1942.

1st Lieutenant Edwin T. Stanard Jr. '38

U.S. Army, World War II

Stanard was killed in action with the First Army in Germany on February 3, 1945, while serving in an advance artillery observation post. He had been awarded the Bronze Star and Presidential Unit Citation. At Country Day, he lettered in football and soccer. He also wrote for the News and was a member of the Masque drama organization.

Lieutenant Howard V. Stephens Jr. '34

U.S. Army, World War II

Stephens was killed in Belgium in the Battle of the Bulge on December 17, 1944, while serving with the First Army. The day he died, he received the Bronze Star for gallantry defending a crossroads against German forces. At CDS, he was state singles and doubles tennis champ, and played football and basketball.

Lieutenant George S. Tiffany Jr. '25

U.S. Navy, World War II

Tiffany was killed on January 7, 1944, while on U.S. Navy convoy duty off Cape May, New Jersey. His gunboat St. Augustine collided with the merchant tanker Camas Meadows late at night when both were running without navigation lights. The gunboat sank within five minutes, and 115 of 145 crew members were lost. At CDS, he was senior class president.

Private 1st Class Harry G. Wells '30

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Wells died on February 1, 1945, in a Waxahachie, Texas, hospital after an auto accident while headed home on furlough from Waco Air Field. He attended Country Day from 1922 to 1925 and was a founding member of the school’s Boy Scout troop. Wells was married, and he was employed by Otis Elevator Co. before enlisting.

Lieutenant Stanard T. Wheaton '32

U.S. Army, World War II

Wheaton was killed in action in Belgium on December 26, 1944. He attended officers’ training at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma, becoming a 1st Lieutenant in a tank destroyer battalion before going overseas. In three years at CDS, he wrote for the newspaper and yearbook and was Troubadours vice-president.

Captain Elmer C. Wirtz, Jr. '32

U.S. Army, World War II

A Captain in the Field Artillery, Wirtz was reported missing in action on Corregidor in the Philippines in May 1942. Attending Country Day School for three years, 1926-1929, he took part in the Troubadours’ dramatic productions. He later attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Washington University.

Lieutenant David P. Wohl, Jr. '41

U.S. Army Air Forces, World War II

Wohl was killed in action over Europe on March 3, 1944, in the first daylight U.S. attack on Berlin. A bombardier on the Flying Fortress “Paper Doll,” he was on his 14th mission. He was awarded the Air Medal for courage and skill, an Oak Leaf Cluster, and the Purple Heart. At CDS, Wohl was active in the Masque and Troubadours.

1st Lieutenant James Schenler Wood ’61

U.S. Army, Vietnam

Wood was killed by hostile fire on June 6, 1968. He attended CDS for eight years. He was active in the Troubadours, Masque, and Glee Club, and played varsity baseball. The James Schenler Wood Humanitarian Award is presented annually to students who have made sacrifices in the service of others.

Every effort has been made to mention and suitably honor all fallen military veterans associated with St. Louis Country Day School, Mary Institute, or MICDS. Information has been obtained from the Country Day News, internet resources, the CDS Archives, and relatives of the deceased. If you know of anyone who should be included in future Veterans Day programs or if you can provide additional information/photographs for the veterans listed here, please contact the MICDS Development Office at 314-995-7312, or send an email to