Alfred Mordhorst

Payette Enterprise
Thursday, July 28, 1921


The military funeral of Alfred Mordhorst, who was killed in action on a battlefield in France, will be held at Riverside cemetery on next Saturday morning at 11 o'clock.

The John Webster Rhoads Post of the American Legion will have charge and all former service men in the County are URGED, in fact all MUST come and assist.

It is respectfully requested that all business houses in the city be closed between the hours of 10:30 A. M. and 12:30 P.M., out of respect to our departed comrade. All people should feel it their particular duty to attend.

Former service men are requested to meet at the Y.M.C.A. corner at 10 o'clock in uniform if possible. There are a few things we must discuss and instructions will be given to carry out our plans.

Payette Enterprise (Thursday, August 04, 1921)


On Saturday of last week the vicinity of Payette was submerged in sorrow at the event of paying the last respects over the mortal remains of one of Payette's most valiant soldier boys who gave his life for his country upon the battle fields of France.

Promptly at eleven o'clock in the forenoon the flags throughout the city were lowered to half mast as the flag draped casket containing all that was earthly of Alfred Mordhorst was placed upon the caisson for transmission to its last resting place in the Riverside Cemetery. The cortege assembled at the sound of the bugle at the Y.M.C.A. and consisted of a beautifully draped caisson drawn by four jet black horses and accompanied by a full military escort, together with hundreds of civilian mourners in as many automobiles. The horses were ridden by soldiers in full military uniform in true army style. The helmet, coat and rifle of the dead soldier preceded him to his last resting place.

The body was accompanied to the cemetery by the largest procession attendant upon any funeral heretofore held in the city, the line of vehicles being over a mile in length. Upon arriving at the cemetery the usual form of infantry funeral was held. Appropriate music was offered by a male quartet. Upon behalf of his comrades fitting remarks were made at the grave by Major Harry Lewis and Lieutenant Albert E. White, commander of the John Webster Rhoades Post, of the American Legion, of Payette. The funeral service was read by the Reverend Ashworth of the local, Episcopal Church. Whereupon the ceremonies were completed in true military style by the usual firing squad, taps were sounded, the flags removed from the beautiful metal casket and the body of our beloved hero was laid to rest in the bosom of his own and native land. Reluctantly the hundreds of mourners slowly returned to their homes and places of business, their minds filled with thoughts, thoughts which brought home to them again the supreme sacrifice of this beloved and honored son who had made the supreme sacrifice and had laid down everything that was dear to him at the feet of liberty, had given up the sweetest of all, his very own life, in order that they could continue the enjoyment of the liberty of God's sunshine and freedom during the years to come, thoughts that are wholesome, thoughts that are the very nucleus and foundation of our nation and the freedom which we enjoy.

Comrade Alfred Mordhorst was born upon the 20th day of September 1894 at Arcada, Iowa, he came to Payette Valley with his parents about twenty years ago, where he grew into manhood and became the magnificent, manly material which is the backbone of our government in every hour of need. He entered the military service of our country upon the 29th day of May, 1918, and was taken to Camp Lewis where he became the excellent and faithful soldier that he was. Later he was transferred to Camp Kearny, California, and on July 29 of the same year to Camp Mills, sailing a few days later for France. He was a member of Company L, 110th Regiment of the 28th Division. He was killed in action in the historical battle of the Argonne Forest in which the American troops played so important and glorious a part. Upon the 5th day of October, 1918, Company L and Company M were ordered to advance down a hillside and to charge a small village on the opposite side of a river in the midst of this famous forest to reach the village, which was occupied by the Germans, it was necessary for the troops to ford this river, which they did, wading water waist deep amidst bursting shells and intense machine gun fire. Having reached the opposite bank, drenched with water, these world's bravest troops charged on a run, this village amidst the machine gun fire which was momentarily becoming more intense. Before reaching their objective the enemies fire became impenetrable and our troops were ordered to seek shelter in shell holes, which some of them did.

It was in this last mad rush that our friend and comrade Alfred Mordhorst was pierced by five machine gun bullets. As soon as possible he was carried back behind the lines and died on his way to the first aid station.

Nothing too grand or noble could be said of this departed comrade, whose only regret at the time of his death was that he could not "carry on" with the others of his company to their ultimate and unrestricted victory. He took his misfortune with the calmness and confidence of one who insists that shortly he will be restored to life and health; but he had run the race, he and fought a good fight, he had kept the faith and his work was done.

Alfred Mordhorst is gone. But his spirit, his soul, and the purposes for which he was created and lived goes marching on. It had been wisely said that "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends," and if his survivors, the thousands upon thousands of living Americans today can realize and remember what the little mound in the Riverside Cemetery in Payette, Idaho, and the thousands and thousands of other mounds scattered throughout the world at large. Alfred Mornhorst shall not have died in vain. Let us live and breathe to the perpetuation of the noble sentiment set in motion by the supreme sacrifice of this faithful soldier.