Lincoln said at Gettysburg "It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated to the unfinished work...that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom.
My oldest daughter, the artist, graduates from High School tonight. As I prepare for her graduation party, and for her to head off to college, I thought it was important to try to tell her about our past, so I have been researching our family's genealogy. I found a man, her Great Grandmother's Grandfather, David Marks Church, who deserves special remembrance. In May of 1864 at the age of 16, David Church joined the 39th Wisconsin infantry. He was mustered out for wounds received from shrapnel in September of 1864. Being not quite 17 and too stubborn to stay a civilian, he joined the 38th Wisconsin infantry in October 1864. In July of 1865 he was again mustered out for wounds, this time as a result of powder burns from battle in Petersburg, Virginia in April 1865.
When he was admitted to the U.S home for disabled volunteer Soldiers in Milwaukee in 1901, he was 5' 2 1/2" tall, yet Private David Church towers over me.
It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated to the unfinished work.