Van Gundy Family Tree

Notes for Everett O VAN GUNDY

Relatives said he never married but newspapers reported his wife's activies and she was with him in the 1930 census. Apparently they never had children.

Events in his life:

Events in his life were often recorded by the newspaper:

1/1903 Everett had scarlet fever.

3/14/1903 "Everett Van Gundy is on the sick list."

3/22/1903 "Everett Van Gundy, who has been very sick with pneumonia, is improving."

1/8/1904 "Everett and (sister) Mabel Van Gundy have returned from a visit with their grandparents, E. Walker and wife in Assumption."

He was a football hero in high school.

6/5/1917 Macon Co, IL. When he registered for the draft, he listed his address as the city of Macon, IL. His occupation was grain dealter at "Moueaqua," IL He was a single man and under exceptions, it says he volunteered but was rejected. He was described as short and stout with blue eyes and dark hair.

He served in WWI as Pvt in the US Army, being in France in 1918. On Sept 23 he wrote a letter to his uncle, Elmer, back home who forwarded it to the newspapers. It stated:

"I know you have seen in the paper about the big drive we made and you all wondered if I was in it. I surely was in it and am yet, I guess. We are today at rest two miles from the firing line and may be called to go back again at any moment.
Our company had been distinguished for bravery in this drive and it was some drive over hills and streams and wading through mud and water to our knees. I guess we drove them about (deleted) miles back. I cannot tell you about the fight as I want to forget it, but get 'Over the Top' and read it.
Dad asked me for a German helmet. you tell him I could have gotten 100 but I don't want any and we have all we can carry. We could pick up field glasses, pistols, knives, anything you could think of but I am afraid to pick them up as one of our men picked up a
canteen and opened it and it blew his hands off. So you see a person cannot be too careful of the Boche.
So I would rather be careful and come home myself than bring a lot of things home for my friends to look at as they would not do anybody any good.
I would surely like to see the new home, but maybe I can come home some time next summer if we can keep them on the go all the time. I have given up the thought of coming home this year because I don't think the American people want us to quit now until the Germans are whipped almost to death."

The newspaper article also included a paragraph about France" from another letter a few days later. The letter was written on YMCA stationary with the following letterhead: On active service with the American Expeditionary Force. The letter, dated 9/29/1918, was addressed to his mother at Box 197, Decatur, IL, and stated:

"My Dearest Mother:
I am dropping you these few lines as I know it will be ten maybe fifteen days before I will (get) to write again as we start to the (edited out), so dont worry if you do not hear from me for a few days because I will be (edited out) and wont have time to write.
Tell Helen and Dorothy that I got their letters and was glad to get them and want them to write again and am glad they like their new home and I bet they do have a good time with their new friends and when school starts is when they will have the big time and I hope they like it better than at Macon.
Well Mother I have seen and read about Sunny France but it can rain more here in a day than it can rain in a month back home, but the mountains here sure are pretty but I dont think I would spent any money to come to the foreign land because Cal. as got it on any thing than I have seen over here. But they do have a few historical things over here, as I was in the church the other day that Joan of Arc used to attend so you can see the age of some of the buildings over here. It had the statue of her in it and sure is a fine peice of work, but the German Army is trying to destroy it as that is what they are noted for.
So Mabel thinks she is an old lady now does she just because she is twenty wed she is getting old fast alright, and as to the bet Helen mentioned in her letter I dont know what she is talking about because I never made any bet as to age but as to her getting married before I did, so tell her not to brag yet as she may lose yet. I'll bet you and Mabel have some time going to the shows because you are where you can go so easy now but I suppose Junior objects to you going so Sis goes and you stay at home and keep him. I'll bet he is a fat fine fellow now and I guess he will be over a year old by the time I get to see him from the looks of things, and he dont know that he even has a brother so far away from home.
Well I suppose you are worrying about Clarence again by now being brought home hurt as I suppose he is playing football again and tell him to make good better than he did last year and it will help Freddie when he goes into H.S. next year so much if he has a brother who has made before him.
Mother I see in the paper where the Gov is going to allow Christmas boxes to be sent over well dont send all my things as I cant carry them and I would sooner have the socks when I come home so dont send more than two pair of socks anyway as I wont need any more of them, but the other things would be glad to have. Well I must close for this time.
With Lots of Love
Your Soldier Son
The letter was stamped "OK" by 2nd Lieut GD Wright, censor.

1920 Decatur, Macon Co, IL. At census time he was 24 and still living with his parents. His occupation was (unreadable) Agent.

7/1926 The newspaper said Everett shot a 38 at the Nelson Golf Course to qualify for the city open. He shot a 79 in the tournament but didn't win. He also played at South Side Country Club where he was mentioned in results of several tournaments.

6/6/1927 The Decatur Herald reported an accident in which Elmer was one of the drivers:

"Frank Rehling of 335 South McClellan, his brother, Lester Rehling, of 1210 East Prairie street, and Thomas Donahue of 328 West Eldorado street, were all severely injured when the car in which they were riding, driven by E. VanGundy of 363 South William street, was struck by a car driven by Gus Karelas, 124 Merchant street, about 5 o'clock Sunday evening.
The accident occurred at the intersection of Leafland and Calhoun streets. According to the report made at police headquarters, VanGundy was driving south on Calhoun street, and Karelas was driving west on Leafland. The VanGundy coach was struck in the rear left side, and was badly battered. The car overturned and pinned Donahue beneath. With the assistance of several passers the coach was lifted and Donahue was freed.
He was taken to the Wabash hospital in Moran's ambulance, where it was found that he had sustained a fracture of the jaw, and severe lacerations about the head. One of his ears was practically severed from his head. Monday he was reported much improved. There were no internal injuries.
Frank Rehling was taken to St Mary's hospital where an examination revealed a fractured collar bone. The injury was cared for and he was taken to his home later in the evening. Lester Rehling sustained lacerations and bruises."

6/5/1928 A year later, according to the newspaper, the accident resulted in Donahue being hospitalized for months. The passenger sued the other driver and won a $7500 settlement, much less than the $25, 000 sought.

1930 W Leafland, Decatur. In that census he and "Gwendoleen" were living alone. He was 35, she was 32. His occupation was treasurer of a lumber retail company.

Some relatives said he died of a brain tumor.

Copyright 2010 by BJ Van Gundy

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