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Last Soldier to Perish in the Great War

Article about: Henry Nicholas Gunther was reportedly the last soldier of the contending nation to have been killed-in-action during the First World War. Henry died instantly from a bullet to the head at 10

  1. #21


    I was at the village in 2009 in Meuse Argonne with my father.
    Small village in the direction of Verdun from the US Meuse Argonne cemetery.

  2. #22


    The Canadians took Mons on Nov 11th, George Price a Canadian is Recognized as the Last soldier Killed on Nov 11th, and this has been stated for years, so this American is new to me. I have always wondered how close the actual time was from Div to Div, Corp to Corp or Army to Army.
    Regardless, what a waste!!!

    Dean O
    Ajax Canada

  3. #23


    It is said that even the Germans – who knew that they were literally minutes away from a ceasefire – tried to stop the Americans attacking. But when it became obvious that this had failed, they fired on their attackers and Gunter was killed. His divisional record stated:

    “Almost as he fell, the gunfire died away and an appalling silence prevailed.”

    General John Pershing, believed that the Germans had to be severely defeated at a military level to effectively ‘teach them a lesson’. Pershing saw the terms of the Armistice as being soft on the Germans. Therefore, he supported those commanders who wanted to be pro-active in attacking German positions – even though he knew that an Armistice had been signed. In particular, the Americans suffered heavy casualties attempting to cross the River Meuse on the night of the 10th/11th with the US Marines taking over 1,100 casualties alone. However, if they had waited until 11.00, they could have crossed the river unhindered and with no casualties. The 89th US Division was ordered to attack and take the town of Stenay on the morning of November 11th. Stenay was the last town captured on the Western Front but at a cost of 300 casualties.

    the last British soldier killed in World War One was Private George Edwin Ellison of the 5th Royal Irish Lancers. He was killed at Mons (where he had also fought in 1914) at 09.30, just 90 minutes before the ceasefire.

    The last French soldier to die was Augustin Trebuchon from the 415th Infantry Regiment. He was a runner and was in the process of taking a message to his colleagues at the front informing them of the ceasefire. He was hit by a single shot and killed at 10.50.

  4. #24


    I have read that the last solider to die in ww1 was Lieutenant Tomas. " but the last German (and last soldier) killed may have been a Lieutenant Tomas. After 11:00, he approached some American soldiers to let them know that, since the war was over, he and his men were vacating a house and it would be available. Unfortunately, no one had informed the Americans of the Armistice and they shot him"

  5. #25


    Thanks for your account of Lieut. Tomas. Tragically, there were many who suffered death even after the eleventh hour set for the armistice to take effect by unexploded munitions of whatever kind, and yes, by a few detached incidents by those who may themselves have been at outlying and therefore isolated points.

  6. #26


    On November 11, Pte Price was part of an advance to take the small village of Havré. After a crossing of the Canal du Centre into the town of Ville-sur-Haine under German machine gun fire, Price and his patrol moved toward a row of houses intent on pursuing the machine gunner who had harassed their crossing of the canal. The patrol had entered the house from which they had thought the shooting had come, but found the Germans had exited through the back door as they entered the front. They then pursued into the house next door and again found it empty. George Price was fatally shot in the region of his heart by a German sniper as he stepped out of the house into the street, against contrary advice from a house occupant, at 10:58 a.m., November 11, 1918. He died just 2 minutes before the armistice ceasefire, that ended the war, came into effect at 11 a.m.
    Thank you wiki George Lawrence Price - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Last edited by Heavington; 12-16-2013 at 04:21 AM. Reason: wrong soldier

  7. #27


    Found Sgt Gunthers grave. Separate tread here

    Gravesite: Sgt Henry Gunther

  8. #28


    The end of the war was a ceasefire, not an armistice. That wasn't negotiated until 1919. So the Allied commanders wanted to take certain towns or terrain features if the ceasefire broke.

    Here is Price's grave which I have visited several times.

    Attachment 616265

  9. #29


    Here is where the Canadian 116th battalion stopped on the moment of cease-fire. They were the furthest point of advance of the Allied armies when the cease-fire began.

    Attachment 616270

  10. #30


    WW1 is replete with irony. Perhaps the biggest irony is across the street from this where the war ended is a monument in disrepair commemorating where the first shot was fired by the British in WW1 by a soldier of the Irish Dragoon Guards.

    The war for the Commonwealth thus ended on the exact spot where it began.

    Attachment 616281

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