Brookline War Memorial
Raymond P. Cronin

Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin - United States Marine Corps
American Expeditionary Force (1917-1918)

...

"Brookline's Most Decorated Soldier"

Raymond Paul Cronin was born on September 6, 1893, the son of John W. and Edna A. Cronin of 1503 Berkshire Avenue. The Cronin family was part of the initial wave of new homeowners in the up-and-coming community of Brookline. They were also some of the original members of Resurrection Parish. In March 1917, Raymond had recently returned home after a four-year enlistment as a United States Marine and was an employee of the Postal Service.

On April 6, 1917, the United States of America declared war on the Empire of Germany and entered into the global conflict that had been raging abroad for the past three years. Two days later, while many of Brookline’s young men were joining the call to arms, twenty-three year old Raymond re-enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. On April 28th he was assigned to the USS New Hampshire, based in Norfolk, Virginia, and promoted to Corporal.

The Secretary of War made a formal request to President Woodrow Wilson that a regiment of Marines be included in the first contingent of troops sent to France. On May 27, the President directed the Secretary of the Navy "to issue the necessary orders detaching for service with the Army a force of Marines to be known as the Fifth Regiment of Marines."

Marine 1st Battalion 5th Regiment Patch

This unit was rapidly organized in Quantico, Virginia with Marines stationed in the U.S., Cuba, Santo Domingo, Haiti, and from various shipboard detachments. Added to this contingent of veteran soldiers was a liberal amount of raw recruits necessary to bring the regiment up to strength. Among the veteran Marines was Cpl. Raymond Cronin, who was assigned to the 49th Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Regiment (1/5).

CROSSING THE POND

The 1st Battalion arrived in Philadelphia on June 11 and boarded the USS DeKalb, a former German mail ship once called Prinz Eitel Friedrich that was interned in 1915. The DeKalb embarked for New York Harbor the following day. When the DeKalb arrived outside New York, it anchored next to the Statue of Liberty.

Two days later, a convoy of ships set sail for St. Nazaire, France. During the two-week voyage, Cpl. Cronin was kept busy with compulsory shipboard drills, guard mount, frequent inspections, target practice, maintenance of clothing and equipment, lookout duties and details as a gun crew member.

USS DeKalb in Philadelphia Harbor - June 12, 1917
Marines boarding The USS DeKalb, on June 12, 1917. The ship set sail that day from Philadelphia harbor.

The trip across the Atlantic was accomplished without loss of life from enemy causes, despite a pair of encounters with German U-Boats. The 1st Battalion arrived at St. Nazaire in western France on June 26. President Wilson directed that the 5th Marine Regiment was to serve as part of an Army force, and the regiment was assigned to the U.S. 1st Division.

Cpl. Cronin’s battalion disembarked with little fanfare on the same day and marched five miles to the western outskirts of the city, to a British campground known as Base Camp #1. This was to be their home for the next couple of weeks. The Marines primarily busied themselves with marches and close order drills, sometimes marching back to the docks to spend time unloading ships.

Marines at Base Camp #1 - July 1917
U.S. Marines at Base Camp #1 in early-July 1917.

TRAINING FOR WAR

On July 15, the regiment moved to the vicinity of Gondrecourt in eastern France for its initial training as a part of the U.S. 1st Division. On the 21st, units of the 6th Groupe de Chasseurs Alpines, considered by the French to be among the finest units in their Army, were assigned as instructors for the regiment.

Instruction centered around the various phases of offensive and defensive trench warfare, including trench construction, grenade throwing, bayonet fighting, gas mask drill, weapons firing at land targets and airplanes, artillery and artillery-infantry demonstrations.

During this time they were visited by many military dignitaries, including General Pershing, Commanding General of the American Expeditionary Force, the U.S. 1st Division Commander, and General Philippe Petain, the Commander-in-Chief of all French Forces.

In September 1917, the 5th Regiment was reassigned to serve with the U.S. 2nd Division and moved south twenty-two miles to Bourmont. A month later, the regiment became part of the 4th Brigade of United States Marines, one of the two infantry brigades in the 2nd Division. In December, regimental maneuvers were conducted after the battalions had been trained in the relief of units in trenches and had held joint maneuvers with French troops.

It was during the early days of 1918 that Cpl. Raymond Cronin distinguished himself as a fine soldier and a competent leader. On February 12, he was promoted to Sergeant and assigned as one of the Section Leaders in the 49th Company.

On March 8, the 2nd Division was ordered to the front. They entered the frontline trenches in the Toulon Sector. Initially the 5th Regiment occupied the trenches centered near Les Esparges, in a quiet area twelve miles southeast of Verdun. In these areas Marines put to use against a live enemy the lessons they had learned in Bourmont against a simulated or an imaginary foe.

The procedure each regiment used was to have one battalion enter the trenches, opposite the German lines, remain for a specified time, then take relief from one of the two reserve battalions. Reserve troops, meanwhile, kept busy improving and repairing existing trenches and dugouts, digging new trenches, and stringing and repairing barbed wire entanglements.

Although some units in the division saw real action against the Germans, for Sgt. Raymond Cronin and the 49th Company, things were much quieter. They saw no enemy contact while in the trenches, and only sporadic shelling. In their area, the German trenches were quite distant, so far that they were difficult to see, even with field glasses.

U.S. Marines gather in French town
U.S. Marines gathered in a French town during training exercises in May 1918.

The 5th Regiment departed the Toulon Sector in mid-May, and proceeded to the Gizors training area, thirty-eight miles northwest of Paris. Here, the regiment engaged in ten days of open warfare training under the most hospitable conditions. The terrain was adequate, the surroundings beautiful, the weather enjoyable, liberty was available, and their spirits were high. Things would change dramatically very soon.

THE GERMAN SPRING OFFENSIVE

In March 1918, with nearly fifty additional divisions freed by the Russian surrender on the Eastern Front, the Imperial German Army launched a series of large-scale offensives (The Spring Offensive of 1918) along the Western Front, hoping to decisively defeat the Allies before the U.S. forces could be fully deployed. It began with the Somme Offensive on March 21, then the Lys Offensive on April 9. Both offensives gained ground in ways that threatened to break the back of the English defenses.

While the English struggled to meet the demands of these two breakthroughs, the Germans launched the Aisne Offensive on May 27. This third offensive, launched against the war-weary French between Soissons and Reims saw the Germans quickly reach the north bank of the Marne River at Château-Thierry, only forty miles northeast of Paris. The pivotal engagements that followed are often referred to as the Second Battle of the Marne.

The enemy advance was held at Château-Thierry and the Germans turned right towards Vaux and Belleau Wood. The situation had become desperate. The French and English commands were stretched to the breaking point. It was feared that if the Germans captured Paris then the French troops would lay down their arms and the entire western front could collapse.

Because of this, the sense of urgency was keen among both the attacking Germans and the defending French. It appeared that the climactic moment in the four year Great War was at hand, and it might take a miracle to save the day. That miracle would come in the form of the United States Marine Corps Leatherneck.

MARINES CALLED TO ACTION

Suddenly, on May 30, the 2nd Division, now assigned to the French XXI Corps, French Sixth Army, received orders for movement eastward to stem the flow of onrushing Germans. What was supposed to be a day of rest in observance of the United States Decoration Day (Memorial Day) for the Americans quickly became one of frenzied activity.

Artillery, horses and supplies were jammed into railroad cars, then the Marines of Sgt. Cronin’s 49th Company ate a healthy breakfast, their last hot meal for several days. At 06:00 they left the Gizors area in trucks loaded with 18 to 24 men each, destined for the front lines. The ride was bumpy and uncomfortable.

Allied truck convoy in World War 1
A convoy of trucks carrying soldiers to the front line.

As part of a sixteen mile long convoy of trucks, the 49th Company rode for thirty hours to reach its destination. Along the way the company passed through several quaint villages where the locals waved enthusiastically and threw flowers into the trucks.

Retreating Allied soldiers and fleeing civilians choked the suburban Paris roads on which the convoy passed. After reaching Meaux, twenty-five miles northeast of Paris, the regiment continued on foot. Marching was made most difficult by the heavy loads on the backs of the Marines, the long grades over the dusty roads, the intolerably hot weather, and the sight of the physically tired and visibly dejected French soldiers who were in general retreat.

As the Marines came closer to the battle front, the sounds of war became louder and louder. The steady drum beat of the distant artillery was a constant reminder of what lie ahead. Every so often they would hear a thunderous boom. There was also a dirty haze visible on the horizon from the rising plumes of smoke.

Another interesting sight was occurring overhead in the form of the bright multi-colored planes of the German Air Force, all adorned with the Black Cross on their fuselage. Most were bi-planes and a few were tri-planes. Once commanded by the late-Baron von Richtofen, the "Flying Circus" had almost free reign in the skies over the battlefield due to the lack of Allied planes in this sector of the front.

THE BATTLE OF BELLEAU WOOD

On June 1, Château-Thierry and Vaux fell, and German troops moved into Belleau Wood. The U.S. 2nd Division, with the 4th Brigade of U.S. Marines, was brought up along the Paris-Metz highway. The 9th U.S. Army Infantry Regiment was placed between the highway and the Marne, while the 6th Marine Regiment was deployed to their left. The 5th Marine and 23rd U.S. Army Infantry regiments were placed in reserve.

Before dawn on June 2, the 1st Battalion was ordered to the front to assist the French in holding back the enemy and covering the withdrawal of French units still engaged. They began a six mile hike northwest through several eerily deserted villages, ending at the small town of Bois de Veuilly. Finally, in the early daylight they filled a gap in the French line and began taking selected aimed shots at the enemy.

When the sun set that evening, the American forces held a twelve mile front line north of the Paris-Metz Highway, running through grain fields and scattered woods, from Triangle Farm west to Lucy and then north to Hill 142. The German line opposite them ran from Vaux to Bouresches to Belleau.

German stormtroopers filter into Belleau Wood
German stormtroopers filter into the area around Belleau Wood in early-June 1918.

The Germans were unaware that the Americans had entered the fight and were perplexed as to how their men were being shot and killed up to 800 yards from the front. This was unlike anything they had ever witnessed from the French snipers. By mid-afternoon, the 49th Company and the rest of the 1st Battalion were called back into reserve.

By the next morning, the last of the withdrawing French elements had passed through the Marine lines. Fortunately for the Allies, the German advance had been so swift that their support artillery, food and ammunition trains were lagging far behind the front line troops. They needed to regroup for the final thrust on Paris. Despite these logistical difficulties, the veteran vanguard units were ordered to continue probing forward against the weak and demoralized French defenders.

GERMAN DRIVE HALTED

In the afternoon of June 3, expecting token French resistance, the elite stormtroopers of the Prussian Guard attacked through the grain fields with bayonets fixed. The Marine riflemen waited until the Germans were within 100 yards before opening a deadly hail of accurate fire which mowed down several waves of German infantry and forced the survivors to retreat into the woods.

Having suffered heavy casualties, shocked by the unexpected presence of the American forces, and in overall need of reorganization, the Germans halted their drive on June 4 and dug in along a defensive perimeter from that extended from Hill 204, just east of Vaux, to Le Thiolet on the Paris-Metz Highway and northward through Belleau Wood to Torcy.

On June 5, Sgt. Cronin and the 49th Company found themselves in thick woods on an elevated ridge known as Hill 176. From this vantage point they could look down upon the enemy activity along Hill 142. The dug-in Germans continued mounting brief probing activities and pounded the Allied positions with long-range high explosive artillery. Called "sea bags," the sound of these approaching nine-inch shells tested the nerves of even the most hardened Marine.

With the rolling kitchens stationed five miles to the rear, the men of the 49th Company had eaten little but bread and hard-tack bacon for several days. The lack of food and incessant artillery were causing extreme agitation. Sgt. Cronin and his fellow Marines were itching for a fight, and that is exactly what they got.

BATTLE PLANS ARE DRAWN

The French Sixth Army command ordered the XXI Corps to make two attacks on June 6. The first, in which the 5th Regiment's 2nd Battalion took part, was intended to straighten the corps front. The second was planned to reduce the German salient, which now extended to Hill 142, Bois de Belleau (Belleau Wood), and the town of Bouresches.

Map of Belleau Wood battle plan - June 6, 1918

The 1st Battalion 5th Regiment was assigned to clear Hill 142 of Germans and then join a coordinated thrust towards the town of Torcy. The other regiments of the 2nd Division were to advance through Belleau Wood and Bouresches. The die was cast, and soon Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin of the 49th Company were about to enter into one of the United States Marine Corps' most famous fights.

Facing the Marines in Belleau Wood and the surrounding area were some of the best fighting units Germany had to offer. These highly respected and proven warriors maintained professional pride and instilled fear in anyone who opposed them. Defending Hill 142 were the German 273rd and 460th Regiments, with the 192nd and 193rd Regiments in reserve.

The 1st Battalion attack was to be launched at 03:45am on June 6, 1918. Captain George W. Hamilton, commander of the 49th Company, woke his men early to ready them for battle. Sgt. Cronin and the men were apprised of the plan and instructed to secure their lighter twenty-pound combat packs, check their rifles, fix bayonets, add an extra bandolier of ammunition, and get their minds straight.

To their front, the scattered wheat of early summer was roughly thigh high, lush green and intermingled with occasional clusters of blood-red poppies. Beyond the expanse of open territory were elevated dense woods with many conifer trees that had been well-maintained with selective cutting. There was very little distance between each tree, and one could see only about fifteen to twenty feet ahead.

Terrain around Belleau Wood
The terrain around Belleau Wood was open wheatfields and dense thickets of trees.

Around these woods were many thickets, hollows and underbrush, as well as boulders and woodpiles that provided perfect places to hide machine gun nests. This was the terrain that awaited the men of the 49th Company as they moved against the German’s well-prepared defensive positions.

ATTACK ON HILL 142

At shortly after 3 a.m. on June 6th, Marines of the 49th and 67th Companies, both of the 1st Battalion, lay hidden in position on either side of Hill 142 southwest of Belleau Wood. According to the original plan, two additional companies, the 17th and 66th, should have been in position to join the assault, but these units had not yet been relieved by the French and were still deployed near Les Mares Farm.

The assault was also to have been supported by barrage fire from two companies of artillery and the 6th Machine Gun Battalion. However, the majority of these units were also tied up elsewhere, awaiting relief from the French. This meant that the two infantry companies of the 1st Battalion were supported by just ten field guns of 15th Company dug in behind them, between Champillon and Bois St. Martin.

At the designated time, there were a few moments of light artillery fire in advance of the jump-off, which was not very effective other than causing a commotion. When H-hour came, the Marines were to have a French unit to their left in support, but they also were not in position. At 03:50, without proper artillery or machine gun support, and missing the French units to their left, the 49th Company began their assault, as ordered, on Hill 142.

The plan was for the men to set off in ranked straight line formation across the wheat field towards a ravine and wooded tree line, as in military battles of old. The line formation in waves was used in the Civil War and recently taught to a limited degree by the French Chasseurs. The German defenders, used to facing weary French units, did not expect a determined assault, especially by U.S. Marines eager for a fight. It did not take long for this shock to wear off. The Germans soon let loose a deadly hail of machine gun fire.

ADVANCING INTO A HAIL OF FIRE

Platoon leaders like Sgt. Raymond Cronin, wearing their Sam Browne belts, were leading the way. This prominent identification along with their forward movement was a special target for German snipers, as well as the machine-gunners, therefore they were often the first to fall as casualties. The advancing men hit the ground and hugged the earth. The Germans aimed their gun barrels low. The men could feel their backpacks being hit with bullets.

German Machine Gun Nest
German machine gun nests brought a hail of fire onto the advancing Marines.

German machine guns were everywhere. They were positioned in trees, behind boulders and woodpiles, and in trenches. Their deadly fire was tearing into the Marines. With men being shot and killed all around him, 49th Company Commander, Captain Hamilton, rose and began running through the field, encouraging each of his men to get up and make a dash for the wooded objective.

The Marines had not equipped themselves with mortars and grenades for this mission, and their best chance for survival was in the woods. Their mad rush caught the German defenders by surprise. When the Marines made contact with the enemy there appeared to be mass confusion. However, in reality, this is what the Marines had been prepared for.

Painting of Belleau Wood Battle
U.S. Marines and German troops engage in close combat during the Battle of Belleau Wood.

Undeterred by the deadly fire, the Marines close-combat skills shocked even the battle-hardened Germans. A few enemy leaped to their feet and ran. Those that did were usually fired upon and killed. Some manned their machine guns until overcome by the Marines. Others instantly surrendered, shouting “Kamarad!”

DEVIL DOGS

This was the type of rugged combat where natural instincts and the survival of the fittest mentality took control of the fight. It was every man for himself, kill or be killed. The Marines continuous charge, audacity and fierce determination under such horrific conditions, gave the Germans reason to call them “Teufel Hunden,” translated to “Devil Dog.” One personal letter that was later retrieved from the corpse of a German soldier, said, “These Americans are savages. They kill everything that moves.”

Sgt. Cronin and the men of the 49th Company performed admirably in the woods. Once the area was in control, it was time to pursuing their next objective. They now had to venture out of the trees and into the open again to close on the wooded Hill 142. Again the Marines rushed through the open field. Three German machine gun companies (the 9th, 10th, and 11th Companies of the 460th Regiment) and infantry awaited the onrushing Americans.

Painting of Belleau Wood Battle
U.S. Marines rout the German defenders around Belleau Wood, earning the nickname "Devil Dogs."

As before, the German defenders were overwhelmed and routed, but at a horrendous cost in life and limb. With the main objective now in hand, the remaining men of the 49th Company, including Sgt. Cronin, continued their advance to the outskirts of Torcy. Captain Hamilton, still leading from the front, soon realized that adrenaline had taken them too far. He ordered his Marines to fall back to the hill to regroup and establish a defensive position in expectation of a German counterattack.

Still suffering from a deadly stream of German defensive fire, Captain Hamilton organized the remaining men of the two attacking Marine companies. Uncertain of where the supporting French units were to his left, he sent out parties who attempted to establish contact.

Two of these brave men that set out under heavy fire to establish liaison with the nearby French units were Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin and Sgt. Arthur F. Ware. Both of these soldiers, who had up to now survived some of the most hellish wartime conditions, were shot dead attempting to make contact with their allies. They were among the 333 killed, wounded, and missing during the day’s battle for Hill 142.

The Germans launched five counterattacks against the Marine positions on Hill 142. Each was repulsed. After each attack, the Marines resumed digging in and awaiting further orders. Without word from Sgt. Cronin or Sgt. Ware on the whereabouts of the French units, Captain Hamilton spent that evening most concerned about his left flank. Luckily, the Germans were also suffering symptoms of nervousness. They drew back into their own hastily prepared defensive positions to await another mad rush from the American Devil Dogs.

BLOODIEST BATTLE IN MARINE CORPS HISTORY

When the day of June 6, 1918 was over, Hill 142 had been secured to a degree, and the Marines had established a firm foothold in Belleau Wood. The casualty count (including all engagements around Bois de Belleau), consisting of both wounded and killed was 31 officers and 1,056 men for a total of 1,087. This figure was more than the sum total of all Marine casualties over their past 143-year history.

Despite all the tragic details there was good news in that the Marines, in true fashion, had carried the day. Their message was clear to the Germans, and the news reverberated back home to America, and also east to Germany. The Marines had earned a measure of respect from both friend and foe. Much of the credit for the day’s success was owed to the basic training, grit and aggressiveness of each Marine Leatherneck and his Springfield rifle.

The Germans may have lost control of the elevated ridge, but they were not about to retreat or give up the thought of retaking the Hill 142. It would take several more days of action before the hill was finally secured. Claiming ultimate control of the Belleau Wood territory was a separate issue.

Devil Dogs and French Poilus at Belleau Wood
U.S. Marine "Devil Dogs" and French Poilus at the Battle of Belleau Wood.

Over the next twenty days the battle for possession of the entire Belleau Wood landscape was ceded back and forth several times. During this time, men from other battalions and companies within the Marine Brigade performed admirably. Even so, German long-range artillery persisted in harassing the Marines and the free-roaming planes of the “Flying Circus” continually dropped bombs at the worst possible moments.

On the morning of June 26, after repulsing a few final half-hearted German thrusts at their lines, the Marines succeeded in pushing the enemy from the area. For nearly a month, the leathernecks had fought a tenacious foe and, when the guns fell silent, had prevailed.

For the Americans, the cost to capture Belleau Wood was terrible. Casualties totaled 9,777, including 1,811 killed. Of that, the Marines suffered 4,298 dead, wounded or missing. Many of the dead are buried in the nearby Aisne-Marne American Cemetery. No accurate count of German fatalities was ever made. For the Community of Brookline, the count was one dead: Devil Dog Sergeant Raymond P. Cronin.

Raymond P. Cronin

THE ALTARS OF PATRIOTISM

Ecstatic that their capital had been saved from the Germans, the French High Command lauded the Marines with numerous awards and accolades. Belleau Wood itself was given the sobriquet Bois de la Brigade de Marine, or “Wood of the Marine Brigade.”

American commanders were also eager to award the valiant Marines who suffered and sacrificed so much. One of those recipients was Brookline’s Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin, who was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the Navy Cross and the Silver Star Citation (the second - Army, second - Navy and third highest medals awarded in the U.S. Armed Forces).

Generals Petain and Pershing in 1923
Generals Petain and Pershing at the dedication of a
war memorial near Belleau Wood in 1923.

Five years later, a monument was dedicated to the fallen near the battle site. The commander of the Marine Brigade, Army General James Harbord, spoke at the event. “Now and then, a veteran will come here to live again the brave days of that distant June,” he said. “Here will be raised the altars of patriotism; here will be renewed the vows of sacrifice and consecration to country. Hither will come our countrymen in hours of depression, and even of failure, and take new courage from this shrine of great deeds.”

General Pershing, Commanding General of the American Expeditionary Forces, referring to the events of June 1918, said, "The deadliest weapon in the world is a United States Marine and his rifle." Pershing also said "the Battle of Belleau Wood was for the United States the biggest battle since Appomattox and the most considerable engagement American troops had ever had with a foreign enemy."

Devil Dog Recruiting Poster

As for the Marines being called “Teufel Hunden” by the defending Germans; since the term is not commonly known in contemporary German, the more accurate German term would be "Höllenhunde" which means "hellhound." For the Americans who lived through the hell of the Battle of Belleau Wood, the term “Devil Dogs” would do just fine. The term was used for many years on recruiting posters and, to this day, is a common phrase used to describe a member of the United States Marine Corps.

PFC. GUIDO C. BOECKING

When the initial rush of enlistments happened back in April 1917, another Brookline boy who joined the United States Marine Corps was Guido C. Boecking, an acquaitance of Raymond Cronin who lived at 1007 Brookline Boulevard. Guido was assigned to the 43rd Company, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment.

Guido's and Raymond's paths through France were nearly identical, and both ended up facing the Germans in the Battle of Belleau Wood. While Raymond lost his life in the Battle for Hill 142, Guido was wounded in the fight for the Bouresches and the main woods.

While in the hospital, Guido learned of Raymond's death and wrote home to his parents. It was the Boeckings who first informed the Cronins of their son's death. Raymond's father immediately cabled Major General Barnett in Washington, who in turn cabled General Pershing's headquarters.

The return message from France, received by the Cronins on August 15, 1918, confirmed that Raymond was killed in action. Two weeks later Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin's name appeared in the casualty list published daily by the Pittsburgh Press.

Marine Pfc. Guido C. Boecking survived went on to participate in the Battle of Soisson and the Meuse-Argonne Campaign. The 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment participated in the post-war occupation of Germany and returned to the United States in August 1919.

A DECORATED HERO RETURNS HOME TO BROOKLINE

After a brief interment in France, the remains of Sergeant Raymond P. Cronin were returned to his family in Brookline. The highly decorated war hero was afforded a Military Funeral at his parent’s home at 1503 Berkshire Avenue and a blessing by Father Quinn at Resurrection Church on September 4, 1918. Raymond was buried at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Cemetery, located at 45th Street and Penn Avenue in Central Lawrenceville.

Based on the medals that Sgt. Cronin received for his heroism at the Battle of Belleau Wood, he is officially the most decorated soldier in the Community of Brookline.

<><><><> <><><><> <><><><> <><><><> <><><><> <><><><>

The text of Sgt. Raymond P. Cronin’s Distinguished Service Cross citation:

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918 takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Sergeant Raymond P. Cronin (MCSN: 81742), United States Marine Corps, for extraordinary heroism while serving with the Forty-Ninth Company, Fifth Regiment (Marines), 2d Division, A.E.F., in action near Chateau-Thierry, France, 6 June 1918. Under heavy machine-gun fire, Sergeant Cronin attempted to establish liaison with an adjoining French unit, during which he was killed. War Department General Orders No. 101 (1918).

Distinguished Service Cross

Navy Cross

Silver Star Citation

Marine Expeditionary Medal

Purple Heart Medal

Expert Rifleman Award

* Written by Clint Burton: March 21, 2018 *




The Brookline War Memorial

The Brookline Veteran's Memorial.

Listed below are many of the sons of Brookline who gave their
lives to preserve freedom and contain aggression during
World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather, we should thank God that such men lived.”
General George S. Patton
 

United States Army (1775-present)  United States Army Air Services (1917-1947)  United States Navy (1775-present)  United States Marine Corps (1775-present)
United States Coast Guards (1790-present)  United States Air Force (1947-present)  United States Merchant Marine (1775-present)

World War I (1917-1919)

Percy Digby

Digby, David P.
Mayville Avenue
Army

Details

Raymond P. Cronin

Cronin, Raymond P.
Berkshire Avenue
USMC

Details

Charles Luppe

Luppe, Charles
Ferncliffe Avenue
Army

Details

WW1 Memorial - Washington D.C.
The World War I Memorial - Washington D.C.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

World War II (1941-1945)


Alm William H.
Pioneer Avenue
Army

Details


Arensberg, Roy T.
Fernhill Avenue
Army

Details


Brickley, Edward G.
Woodward Avenue
Army

Details


Bruni, Lawrence A.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Capogreca, James J.
Merrick Avenue
Navy

Details


Copeland, Clarence R.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Cullison, Thomas J.
Birtley Avenue
Army

Details


Dempsey, Howard F.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Dempsey, Walter F.
Milan Avenue
Navy

Details


Diegelman, Edward R. Jr
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Dornetto, Frank P.
Jacob Street
Navy

Details


Fagan, Gerald B.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Falk, Harold E.
Pioneer Avenue
Army

Details


Fehring, Robert M.
Fernhill Avenue
Army

Details


Hynes, Richard E.
Waddington Avenue
Army

Details


Jackson, Robert E.
Brookline
Army

 


Kestler, Paul C.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Ketters, Robert C.
Berkshire Avenue
Army

Details


Mahoney, Michael J.
Oakridge Street
Army

Details


Majestic, Arthur B.
Starkamp Avenue
Army

Details


Mayberry, Alexander G.
Breining Street
Army

Details


Mazza, John
Alwyn Street
Army

Details


McCann, Robert F.
Edgebrook Avenue
Navy

Details


McFarland, Hugh R.
McNeilly Road
Army

Details


Miller, William J.
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Napier, Edward J.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details


Nicholson, John D.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


O'Day, John R.
Creedmoor Avenue
Navy

Details


Orient, Andrew D.
Fordham Avenue
Army

Details


Pisiecki, Raymond A.
Wolford Avenue
Army

Details


Reeves, Alfred M.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details


Reitmeyer, John P.
Bellaire Avenue
Navy

Details


Rhing, Vern M.
Norwich Avenue
Army

Details


Shannon, Harry C.
Midland Street
Army

Details


Shannon, Jack E.
Midland Street
USMC

Details


Simpson, James D.
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Spack, Harry
Linial Avenue
Army

Details


Vierling, Howard F.
Fordham Avenue
Army

Details


Wagner, Ralph G.
Shawhan Avenue
Army

Details


Wentz, Walter L. Jr
Woodbourne Avenue
Army

Details


Zeiler, Harold V.
West Liberty Avenue
Army

Details

WW2 Memorial - Washington D.C.
The World War II Memorial - Washington D.C.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Korean War (1950-1953)

Patrick Gallagher

Gallagher, Patrick J.
Bodkin Street
Army

Details

James Gormley

Gormley, James W.
Brookline Boulevard
Army

Details

Gerald Hilliard

Hilliard, Gerald G.
Edgebrook Avenue
Army

Details

James McKenna

McKenna, James E.
Bellaire Place
Army

Details

Korean War Memorial - Washington D.C.
Korean War Memorial - Washington D.C.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Vietnam War (1965-1973)

James Robert Bodish

Bodish, James R.
Plainview Avenue
Army

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

James Gilbert Collins

Collins, James G.
Dunster Street
Army

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

James Charles Wonn

Wonn, James C.
Mayville Avenue
Navy

Virtual Wall
Additional Details

Vietnam War Memorial - Washington D.C.
Vietnam War Memorial - Washington D.C.




The Brookline Monument - The Cannon

Brookline Veteran's Park - April 26, 2014.

<Brookline War Memorial> <> <Brookline History>