Students seek KIA/ MIA family contacts

Students at Hills-Beaver Creek are participating in a countywide project and they are asking for your help.

Mandi Kor’s eighth-, 10th, 11th- and 12th-grade English classes are researching Rock County soldiers who either were killed during a military conflict or went missing. 

The research projects are not only for Kor’s class but also for a larger KIA-MIA Writing Contest sponsored by the Rock County Historical Society, Rock County Star Herald, Herreid Military Museum and the Luverne Chamber of Commerce.

Students from H-BC and the Luverne School District were invited to submit a written article between 300 and 1,200 words featuring one of the soldiers on the list provided. 

They receive bonus points for including pictures or family interviews.

They were asked to pick a solider and use a variety of resources to find out more about his life. They can use the Internet, interview people in the community, and research archived historical documents.

Students in Kor’s classes have visited with residents at the Tuff Memorial Home and have made phone and email contact with relatives around the county.

Kor is asking anyone with information about the individuals listed to contact her so that she can get the information to the students.

She can be reached by calling the school at 507-962-3240 or by emailing

“I really like this project. It touches on many of the things we learn in class — investigation, research, writing, communication and interviewing skills.”

She also likes that it forces the students to interact with people in person and over the phone instead of on the Internet or with texts.

She gave her students a timeline for making contacts and gathering information. That deadline is fast approaching. 

The project deadline for submitting their completed writing assignments to the Chamber office is April 26. Winners will be selected by May 10.

For more information or to browse some soldier obituaries, visit the H-BC High School website at and click on the KIA/MIA tab on the left side of the screen.


Why KIA/MIA soldiers?

The Rock County Historical Society received grant money from the State of Minnesota. The focus of the grant was connecting students with history.

The specific grant project applied for involved having students research KIA and MIA soldiers.

For many of these individuals information about their lives, their service and their families is scarce. 

For some there is no more than a death notice and for others all information comes from a newspaper obituary. The project is hoping to expand  that information and provide a reason for the students to learn more about their history.

This partnered well with 2014 expansion of the Herreid Military Museum. The plan is to feature the writings in an interactive display at the museum.

Student writings will also be judged, with winners being awarded cash prizes.

Selections of the submissions will be printed  in local newspapers to mark Memorial Day. 

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