World War I medals returned to Missouri family

Unclaimed World War I medals found in a bank safe deposit box were reunited Thursday afternoon with the family members of the veteran who earned them.

State Treasurer Clint Zweifel gave the unclaimed property — a Distinguished Service Cross and a Croix de Guerre, or the French Cross of War — to Margaret Means of Festus. She is a distant relative of Maj. Ernest W. Slusher, who had previously served in the Spanish American War before being honored for his bravery in World War I.

Born in Dover, Mo., in 1875, Slusher became a doctor in 1897. He practiced medicine in the Kansas City area before becoming a regimental surgeon in the 140th Infantry Regiment, 35th Division of the American Expeditionary Forces.


Flanked by American Legion Post 5 members Terry Williams, at right, and Tom Goodin, second from right, Margaret Means looks at the items in the display case in the Missouri State Museum. Means is a family member of the person whose personal medals are on display and was at the ceremony for the unveiling.

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