He was one of a handful of American soldiers killed-in-action while taking part in a U.S. expedition to Siberia, Russia, in August 1918.
The expedition, which is literally unknown the the majority of Americans today, was sent in order to keep the peace between the Rusian “Red” and “White” forces immediately following World War I.
The expedition was eventually withdrawn and the “Red” forces (later the Communists) took over Russia.
For more information on the Siberian Expedition, see the biographical entry on Major General William Sidney Graves, its commander.
BODIES REACH CAPITAL
Three Soldiers Killed in Russia to Be Buried at Arlington
WASHINGTON, December 4, 1929 – The bodies of three American soldiers, which for ten years had lain in the frozen soil of the Archangel front of Northern Russia, arrived here this morning and were taken to Fort Myer, Virginia. There they will rest in vaults until Thursday, when they will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery.
The bodies were those of members of the force sent into Russia in 1918.
Those of Elmer E. Speicher, Cook of Company C, 339th Infantry, and Louis Syzmanski, a Private in the same company, were brought here at the request of their next of kin. The third was that of James T. Ida, Private in the 337th Ambulance Corps, who was a native of Japan.
SPEICHER, ELMER R
COOK C 339TH INF
- DATE OF DEATH: 02/04/1919
- BURIED AT: SECTION WWW SITE 2906
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard