Veterans Find Post-War Success
St. Procopius Veterans
After the war, quite a few alumni kept in touch with their alma mater. Many were very successful in their post-war careers, as these selections from the Studensky Listy show.
Rudolph Strnad wrote to his alma mater to inform them of his appointment to a consulate in Berlin. "Some time ago a letter came to us all the way from Berlin, Germany. At first we could not understand who would have thought of us in that foreign land, but upon opening the envelope we found out to our most agreeable surprise that it was from Rudolph Strnad, an alumnus of whom we may well be proud. In the spring of 1918 he enlisted in the Czechoslovak Army, soon rose to distinctions....his rare linguistic accomplishment and fine personal qualities secured for him an enviable position at the Czechosloval Consulate in Berlin."
Albert Stofko was mentioned in an earlier Studentsky Listy as participating in military training exercises at St. Procopius College. His letters home during the war, describing his service in the Navy, were published as well. He sent an update in 1920, shortly after the war's end, detailing his job
Bohumil Dobry, another veteran, found post-war success in milling.
Andrew Sholtis is the student who wrote of being at Camp Funston in Kansas during the flu epidemic, when the entire camp was under quarantine with 8,000 cases of the flu. His post-war accomplishments include opening a law firm. "Andrew J. Sholtis, '05-'08, entered into partnership with A.J. Hartmann and formed a law firm under the name of Hartmann-Sholtis...'Andy,' if we remember rightly, joined the ranks of the defenders of Democracy during the late World War and became 1st lieutenant."
This interesting letter from Edward Lockout, an alumnus and veteran, describes his instrumental role in developing the brand-new technology of fingerprinting. "Iowa Marine is a Fingerprint Expert - Washington DC (Special). Examine the little loops and whorls at the ends of your fingers...these markings on the ends of your fingers will remain the same from cradle to grave. It is from the impressions made by them that finger prints are made...Eddie's success ought to be an incentive to all Procopians to work hard and never give up. We extend our heartiest congratulations to Mr. Lockout."
Before becoming head of this innovative bureau that used fingerprints for identification, Edward Lockout held many other important duties, including working directly for then-President Wilson. "In one of the Marine Corp offices at the Headquarters here, Q. M. Sergeant Edward M. Lockout...examines these finger prints all day. He is the only enlisted man in the United States in charge of such a bureau. He has approximately 160,000 of these records in his charge and he will assure you that he has never found any two of them to be alike. These finger prints are kept for identification purposes and have proven to be more reliable than either photographs or signatures...Among his other duties he was Orderly for Woodrow Wilson, when the latter was President, and served on the presidential yacht...he was given a position as Clerk in the Identification Unit, later becoming head of the department."
Emil Cherf graduated from St. Procopius College in 1912. He was a fairly prolific correspondant with his friends at St. Procopius, and the Studentsky Listy published many exerpts from his letters. In June 1918, he writes of being First Segeant with Intelligence Casual at Vancouver, Washington and having the responsibilty of drilling 250 men. Its not all work, however, as he also writes of the success of their baseball team. The Studentsky Listy describes Emil as "genial."
We next hear from Emil later that same year, this time described as "Smiling Emil," still in Vancouver. He reports that he had $100 in war bonds stolen from him, but other than that, he is "getting along fine."
After the war, Emil visited campus a few times, and by January 1921 he was living in Antigo, Wisconsin and working for the mail delivery service. In June 1922 he writes that he is building a "nice little bungalow." He married in 1925. His obituary, published in the Studentsky Listy in January 1929, notes that he died after an operation and left behind his wife and two little boys. He was 35 years old.
This is a list of those associated with St. Procopius College known to have served in WWI, compiled primarily from "Alumni Notices" published in the Studentsky Listy.