When Elmer U. Buchanan was born in 1921 in Texas, his father, Barney, was 23 and his mother, Nannie, was 20. He had one brother and one sister. He entered the military service in Texas. He served in the U.S. Army during World War I as a Private First Class in the 378th Infantry Regiment, 95th Infantry Division. He died on November 18, 1944 and is now buried in Lorraine American Cemetery and Memorial, Saint-Avold, Departement de la Moselle, Lorraine, France.