Private Wayne Miner

Pvt. Wayne Miner was the last American killed in WWI. He was the 24-year-old son of former slaves, and had a wife, Belle, waiting for him in Kansas City. Early in the morning of Nov. 11, 1918, with the Armistice scheduled for 11:00 AM, all the soldiers needed to do was survive until then. But he volunteered to take ammunition to an outpost that needed it, and he was killed on the way there, just 3 hours before the Armistice.

He was born in Henry County, MO in 1894, one of 11 children. He and his wife Belle lived near 5th St. and Troost, in Kansas City, MO. He was drafted and became part of the Army’s 92nd Div., at Fort Riley, KS. The Division was known as The Buffalo Soldiers. He is buried in St. Mihiel American Cemetery, block B, row 14, grave 17.

There is no specific memorial to Miner at this time. There was an apartment complex named for him, formerly located at 11th and Woodland, near The Paseo. There is a brick with his name on it at the Black Veterans Memorial, at 11th and The Paseo. A temporary marker will be placed there, in his honor, from September to November 11, 2018.

The Wayne Miner American Legion Post is the first American Legion post for black veterans, formed in 1919 and is still active. They will be celebrating their 100th anniversary in 2019.


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