Edwin M. Greene

  • Private
  • WW I


Edwin Matteson Greene was born in Hope Valley, Rhode Island on 15 June 1896.  He was the son of John Greene and Phebe Matteson. Edwin graduated from Westerly High School in 1917 and entered Rhode Island State College (RISC) in September 1917 with the class of 1921. Greene majored in Electrical Engineering.  He attended RISC for one year and participated in the Army ROTC Program while a student.  Edwin enlisted in the Rhode Island State Guard on 14 August 1918.

When the United States entered World War I, there were 562 male students enrolled at Rhode Island State College; 334 left to serve in WW I. Edwin, like so many of his classmates, departed college before he graduated and enlisted in the US Army.  He was assigned to the Signal Corps and was sent for intensive training at Bliss Electrical School at Takoma Park, Washington, DC.  During this training, Private Greene became ill with influenza and was hospitalized at Walter Reed Hospital.  Private Edwin Greene died, in the line of duty, on 15 October 1918 from Bronchial Pneumonia following the Spanish Influenza.  

A military funeral was held on 19 October 1918 at Pine Grove Cemetery in Hope Valley, Rhode Island.  His body was escorted to the grave by the 4th Company State Guard of Westerly.  Private Edwin M. Greene, US Army, answered the call to serve his nation with courage and honor during World War I.