Field of Flags Spotlight
Earnest. M. (Bobby) Yantis was born in Brown County in 1879. As a child his family moved to Thorp Spring, in Hood County, where he attended school.
Yantis enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the Philippine Insurrection. At the beginning of World War I. Yantis reenlisted in the Army as a 37-year-old private. Given his prior service, Yantis attended Leon Springs Offi cer Training Course and was commissioned a second lieutenant.
In France, Yantis served as a platoon and company commander in the 91st Infantry Division. He saw action in the Battle of the Meuse-Argonne, Saint-Mihiel, and Chauteau Thierry. He was wounded three times, awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, French Croix de Guerre and French Legion d’honneur.
At the end of the war, Gen. Pershing set up a group of offi - cers to look into ways of improving troop morale.
This led to a conference in Paris in March, 1919, which Yantis was selected as a delegate that founded the American Legion. Yantis remained a strong supporter of the American Legion, founding the Elmer Joiner Post 278 and serving as its commandant for many years.
Yantis remained in Granbury for the rest of his life serving as a community leader and beloved local fi gure.
When he died in 1953 his obituary ran on the front page of the Hood County News.