READFIELD — This Memorial Day, high school student Madison Taylor will be researching the life of 2nd Lt. Carl Alexander, an American service member who is memorialized at the Normandy American Cemetery, according to a news release from John Taylor, museum assistant, National History Day in Maine State Coordinator, Margaret Chase Smith Library.

Taylor, and educator Shane Gower, are charged with telling the untold story of Alexander as part of the Normandy: Sacrifice for Freedom Albert H. Small Student & Teacher Institute.

This institute takes 15 student and teacher teams on a journey through history. Each team selects one Silent Hero who died during or after the D-Day landings and spends months researching the story of this brave American through readings, historical research and primary sources such as war records, draft cards and family interviews, according to the release.

Students and teachers then follow in their Silent Hero’s footsteps as the institute takes them to walk the beaches of Normandy, France. While there, Taylor will deliver a graveside eulogy for Alexander in the Normandy American Cemetery. To complete this task, Taylor asks anyone who knew this Silent Hero to get in touch with Gower.

“In my research, I discovered that Second Lieutenant Alexander had five siblings. He was described as being “an awful tease” by his sister, Peg Bailey,” said Taylor, according to the release. “The family experienced some tragedy during the 1940s. Carl’s father died of a heart attack shortly before Carl left for the service and Carl’s older sister Glennie died of tuberculosis during the war. I would like to find more about his wife, Evelyn Adelman, who was from Kansas City originally, but lived in Pittsfield with Carl. I would also like to talk to any friends he went to school with at Maine Central Institute in Pittsfield.”

Those who knew Second Lieutenant Carl Alexander, or his family are asked to email Gower at [email protected].

The Normandy: Sacrifice for Freedom Albert H. Small Student & Teacher Institute was created by Albert H. Small, a veteran himself, to help a new generation of young people understand the sacrifice made by Americans in WWII. The institute pays for students to undertake a rigorous study of the Normandy D-Day landings and takes teams to France where they walk in the footsteps of their Silent Heroes.

About National History Day: NHD is a nonprofit education organization in College Park, Md. Established in 1974, NHD offers year-long academic programs that engage over half a million middle- and high-school students around the world annually in conducting original research on historical topics of interest. These research-based projects are entered into contests at the local and affiliate levels, May 2, where the top student projects have the opportunity to advance to the National Contest at the University of Maryland at College Park. NHD also seeks to improve the quality of history education by providing professional development opportunities and curriculum materials for educators. NHD is sponsored in part by HISTORY®, Jostens, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Park Service, Southwest Airlines, the Joe Weider Foundation, and the WEM 2000 Foundation of the Dorsey & Whitney Foundation.

For more information, visit

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.