Remembering WWI veteran, Mandan resident Pvt. Everett Henry Gilbert

MANDAN, N.D. - As the 100 year anniversary of Pvt. Everett Henry Gilbert's death approaches, Morton County officials are honoring the veteran who died just 51 days after enlisting in the Army to serve in World War I.

"The noblest place for men to die, is where he dies for men,” said Mitchell Erhardt, Morton and Oliver county veteran service officer.

Pvt. Everett was 21 when he joined the Army in September 1918 to serve in World War I. But in mid-October, he was one of 27 student army trainees at the University of North Dakota Student Army Training Corps who died from influenza.

“Honor these brave young people who offered their lives on the altar of their country and died in its service, in its defense, as truly and as notably as if they were on the field of battle,” Erhardt said.

Now, almost 100 years to the day later, Morton County is making sure one of their hometown heroes is never forgotten.

“It's important to always remember that there's people who died so we could have our freedoms,” said Erhardt.

The VFW Post and American Legion Post combined color guard and National Guard provided full military honors at Everett's gravesite in the Mandan Union Cemetery.

The flag will be sent to Pvt. Everett's great niece who lives in the state of Washington, but couldn't be on hand for the ceremony.