The Seibert Family
Posted: November 4, 2019
Sergeant Lloyd M. Seibert
Each year on Memorial Day, people honor loved through the Museum and Memorial’s Walk of Honor Commemorative Brick program. This year, one of these bricks was dedicated in memory of Lloyd M. Seibert, WWI veteran and father of Julia Seibert Kane and grandfather of Karen Kane-Foempe, both avid supporters of the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Although Sgt. Seibert never spoke much about his service in WWI to his granddaughter, his military achievements, including his Medal of Honor, profoundly influenced their family’s life.
During WWI, Sergeant Lloyd Seibert fought with distinguished bravery in the 364th Infantry, 91st Division and was awarded the Medal of Honor on Sept. 26, 1918. The citation reads:
“Suffering from illness, Sergeant Seibert remained with his platoon and led his men with the highest courage and leadership under heavy shell and machinegun fire. With two other soldiers he charged a machinegun emplacement in advance of their company, he himself killing one of the enemy with a shotgun and capturing two others. In this encounter he was wounded, but he nevertheless continued in action, and when a withdrawal was ordered he returned with the last unit, assisting a wounded comrade. Later in the evening he volunteered and carried in wounded until he fainted from exhaustion.”
When he returned home to San Francisco in 1919, Sgt. Seibert remained in the army and frequently participated in civic ceremonies. He served in the U.S. Cavalry and was stationed in several places including Marfa, Texas, where he met his wife. His daughter, Julia, grew up traveling across the world and fondly remembers Puerto Rico for its bright colors and fruit popsicles the family bought from street vendors. In 1944, Sgt. Seibert briefly retired, but in 1945 he re-enlisted in Harbor Defenses in San Francisco until April of 1946. He and his family then retired in San Francisco.
Karen Kane-Foempe fondly recollected spending time with her grandfather.
“As his granddaughter, I enjoyed attending the American Legion of Honor Christmas party each year in the War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco, California. It was a very festive event in a beautiful setting for which my mom sewed me a new dress each year. I loved grocery shopping with him and my grandmother at the Commissary in the Presidio where my three favorite items were Oscar Meyer sausages, pickled pigs feet and Hostess chocolate cupcakes. Up in their attic in their home on Greenwood Avenue were books by French authors, a City Plan of Paris—all of which I still have—and a metal army bed. I would play up there for hours. I often wondered if my adult fascination for France and things French was due in part to my handling of those items up in the attic during my childhood.”
Since Sgt. Seibert’s rarely spoke about his service in WWI, Karen did not realize the extent of his accomplishments until his burial in 1972.
“He was honored with a twenty-one-gun salute and Taps. Taps in and of itself is enough to inspire emotion but Taps played for someone you have loved is extremely intense. I was proud and in tears all at the same time. He is buried at the San Francisco National Cemetery at the Presidio.”
The Seibert family’s support of the Museum and Memorial extends beyond the Walk of Honor Program. Karen and Julia generously donated Sgt. Seibert’s service medals, including his Medal of Honor, and accompanying citation. Thank you, Julia and Karen, for your generous support of the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Your family’s story helps us understand more deeply the profound and lasting impact of WWI.