Reuben Silva (1918/11/11)
On the day that World War I ended Reuben breathed his final breath.
Reuben Silva was born on November 9, 1896, in Watsonville, California, to Mr. and Mrs. M. J. Silva. The Silvas' other children included sons George, Herbert, John, Royal and daughters Mary, Josephine, Emma and Lulu. Reuben spent his formative years in Soquel, Aptos and Watsonville where he entered high school. In 1915 Silva graduated from Watsonville High School and moved to Berkeley to live with a sister. While living in the east bay area, he was employed as a "bolter" at an Oakland shipyard.
In June 1918 Reuben Silva registered for the draft in Albany, California, and in the fall was inducted into the army. At the time he was described as being of medium height and stature with light colored hair and blue eyes. Reuben was assigned to a heavy artillery company at Fort Rosecrans in San Diego where he began his basic training period. He had just completed two weeks of the training course when he contracted the Spanish Flu and was admitted to the fort's medical facility.
On Armistice Day, November 11, 1918, Reuben Silva died of the flu. His sister Mary who was living in San Diego brought his body home to Watsonville for a funeral and burial in Watsonville's Pioneer Cemetery.
(CAG; USCR, 1900 & 1910 US Census, CA, Santa Cruz; WWID WRP November 12, 1918; Photo WHS)