McLean County, Illinois
Lieut. William C. Wise of Bloomington had the good fortune to reach France as one of Uncle Sam's aviators, but too late to take an active part in bombing the enemy.
He enlisted April 7, 1917, at the age of 22 at Jefferson Barracks, Mo., in the aviation signal corps, but was transferred to the infantry, detailed to the first officers training camp at Fort Sheridan and was commissioned First Lieutenant at Camp Dodge, Des Moines, Ia., assigned to the Machine Gun Battalion and transferred to Fort Douglas, Salt Lake City, Utah, and was then assigned to duty as Intelligence Officer at Jefferson Barracks.
He then resigned his commission in Infantry to become a cadet, U. S. S. M. at Urbana, Ill., In February 1, 1918, graduating April 1, assigned to Chanute Field as Flying Cadet, later taking a six weeks course at Camp Dick, Texas, then known as "Kewees Paradise" and the "Home of the Gold Bar Cadets."
He was commissioned Second Lieutenant of Air Service at Chanute Field July 1, 1918, placed in semi-active duty at Wilbur Wright Field, Dayton, Ohio, and then ordered overseas, sailing from Garden City, L. I., October 1, 1918, and ordered to Issoudim, France, joining the 3d A. I. C.
Before his aspirations to diminish the enemy armies was realized, the armistice was signed. His health failing, he spent two months in a hospital on sick leave and a month of his convalescence in Southern France, and was then assigned duty as Commanding Officer of Casual Co. 987 at St. Aignon, France.
He then sailed for home, reaching Camp Merritt, N. J., March 11, 1919, and receiving his discharge one month later, returning to Bloomington to resume his studies at the State Normal University. The home of Lt. Wise is in Champaign.
[McLean County, Illinois, in the World War, 1917-1918; by Edward E. Pierson & Jacob Louis Hasbrouck c 1921] (Transcribed by: Teri Moncelle Colglazier)
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