Jacob Tolsma


LeMars Sentinel
Tuesday, March 4, 1919


Young Man Was Reported Missing in August But Inquiries Failed to Obtain Any
Information Until Recently Through Red Cross Agency

John Tolsma received notice from the government last fall that his son, Jacob Tolsma, who was in Company G., 128th infantry, had been reported missing on August 3d. Failing to receive any further information through government channels, he took the matter up with Red Cross and that organization has been endeavoring to learn more concerning the fate of the young man. A few weeks ago the Red Cross wrote Mr. Tolsma they had an unconfirmed report that his son had been killed at Chateau Thierry and this week he received another letter from the Red Cross dated February 21st which says:

"Jesse R. Henry, Yale, Michigan, of Company G. says: I was near him when he was hit and killed instantly at Chateau Thierry near the last river crossed. He was advancing at the time. Tolsma had been in the company two months, I was in the same platoon.

Sergeant Clyde Hilgison, Company G. says: Tolsma was shot through the heart at Chateau Thierry. Informant was not eye witness but had it from an eye witness.

It must be a comfort to you to know that your son was killed instantly and did not suffer. The Red Cross wishes you to feel you have our profound sympathy for your loss, but knows that you must feel a pride that no sorrow can efface to have had a son who died bravely for his country."

Those who knew Jake Tolsma will not be surprised to know he died like a man fighting for right. Jake was one of those manly, straightforward, courageous boys, who always did well whatever he did and shirked no responsibility.
Though cut off in his youth, he has probably done more for the world than some who shirked and will live to a ripe old age. The community sympathizes with Mr. Tolsma and appreciates the great sacrifice he has made in giving to his country the boy who was his pride and companion.

~ Transcribed & Submitted by: Linda Ziemann