40 WWI soldiers from Orange County who died in France more than 100 years ago honored
A somber memorial was held in at the Orange County Veterans Cemetery on Craigville Road in Goshen Friday to honor 40 service members from Orange County who lost their lives during a historic battle more than 100 years ago.
The soldiers served with Companies E and L of the 107th Regiment of the 27th Division. They died on Sept. 29, 1918 during the Battle of Hindenburg Line in Northern France.
The day is known locally as “Orange County Veterans Memorial Day” and is commemorated each year with a special ceremony.
“The Battle of the Hindenburg Line is one of the most famous engagements that occurred during World War I,” Neuhaus said. “We will never forget the sacrifices that these 40 soldiers made in defense of the freedoms we all enjoy each day in America and here in Orange County. This ceremony is a fitting tribute for these World War I heroes.”
County officials say the Hindenburg Line was a heavily fortified zone running several miles behind the active front between the north coast of France and Belgium. They say by September 1918, the Hindenburg Line consisted of six defensive lines approximately 6,000 yards deep, equipped with lengths of barbed wire, concrete emplacements and firing positions.
Breaking through the Hindenburg Line helped the U.S. and its allies win World War I, which ended on Nov. 11, 1918.
“Men and women from Orange County have proudly stepped up to serve our country for a long time,” says Orange County VSA Director Christian Farrell. “September 29, 1918 serves as one of the darkest days of our county’s history because of the loss of so many local soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice that same day. Whether it is nearly a century ago, or just a few months ago, we will always remember our fallen heroes.”
This year, a special monument was revealed at the cemetery, etched with the names of those who lost their lives.