Wheaton College marks World War I anniversary

 
Daily Herald report
Updated 4/6/2017 1:01 PM
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  • Wheaton College ROTC Color Guard members David Parker, Noah Kingsbury, Noah Barnes and Nathan Oh participate in a program Thursday on the steps of the Memorial Student Center to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring Wheaton students Russell R. Brooks and Willis H. Cork, who died while serving in World War I.

      Wheaton College ROTC Color Guard members David Parker, Noah Kingsbury, Noah Barnes and Nathan Oh participate in a program Thursday on the steps of the Memorial Student Center to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring Wheaton students Russell R. Brooks and Willis H. Cork, who died while serving in World War I. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

  • Wheaton College President Philip Ryken hosts a brief program Thursday on the steps of the Memorial Student Center to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring Wheaton students who died while serving in World War I. Thursday marked the 100th anniversary of our entry into World War I.

      Wheaton College President Philip Ryken hosts a brief program Thursday on the steps of the Memorial Student Center to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring Wheaton students who died while serving in World War I. Thursday marked the 100th anniversary of our entry into World War I. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

  • "We long and pray for the day when all wars end," Wheaton College President Philip Ryken said Thursday.

      "We long and pray for the day when all wars end," Wheaton College President Philip Ryken said Thursday. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

  • Wheaton College ROTC Cadet Woodson Miles plays bagpipes during a brief ceremony to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring two students who died while serving in World War I.

      Wheaton College ROTC Cadet Woodson Miles plays bagpipes during a brief ceremony to rededicate a bronze plaque honoring two students who died while serving in World War I. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

  • A bronze plaque honors Wheaton college students Willis H. Cork and Russell R. Brooks who died while serving in World War I.

      A bronze plaque honors Wheaton college students Willis H. Cork and Russell R. Brooks who died while serving in World War I. Mark Black | Staff Photographer

Wheaton College marked the 100th anniversary of the U.S. entry into World War I on Thursday by rededicating a bronze plaque honoring two of its students -- Russell R. Brooks and Willis H. Cork -- who died while serving in that conflict.

Standing on the steps of the Memorial Student Center, college President Philip Ryken told a gathering that included ROTC students, that "war is a terrible thing in itself. We long and pray for the day when all wars end."

Both casualties from the school were members of the Class of 1918.

Marine Pvt. Brooks died on Sept. 30, 1918, of pneumonia at an Army hospital in England and is buried there.

Army Pvt. Cork died Oct. 1, 1918, of influenza at Cook County hospital and is buried in Wheaton Cemetery.

"War is also a venue in which to serve others," Ryken told the gathering, "... in a sense the ultimate sacrifice that some would lay down their life for their friends."

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