1st WW1 Casualty was from Evansville

100 years ago Friday, America suffered its first combat death of World War One. He was a Hoosier. Corporal James Bethel Gresham of Evansville was one of three American doughboys killed in hand-to-hand combat with German troops after an artillery assault in the French province of Lorraine. Four years later, with the war over, his body was exhumed from a grave in France and flown home for a second funeral in the statehouse rotunda. Gresham is buried in Evansville, but the sunken garden which forms the northern half of the American Legion Mall in Indianapolis was created to honor him as well.