Edward B. Cole
|Edward Ball Cole|
Edward B. Cole
September 23, 1879|
|Died||June 18, 1918
Field hospital, France
|Buried||Aisne-Marne Cemetery, Belleau, France|
|Service/branch||United States Marine Corps|
|Commands held||6th Machine Gun Battalion, 4th Brigade of Marines|
Distinguished Service Cross
Croix de Guerre
|Relations||Brother — U.S. Army BGen Charles H. Cole|
Edward Ball Cole (September 23, 1879 - June 18, 1918) was an officer in the United States Marine Corps during World War I. He was a leading expert on machine guns; he was killed in action during the Battle of Belleau Wood.
Cole was one of the United States' leading experts on machine guns and had published several articles and a book on the subject — Field Book for Machine Gunners (1917). He received a direct commission in the Marine Corps in World War I.
Cole received the Navy Cross and the Distinguished Service Cross for heroism during the Battle of Belleau Wood in which he was mortally wounded on June 10, 1918. On that day, while he was leading an attack on enemy machine guns a German hand grenade wounded him in the foot. When a second grenade landed in front of him, he grabbed it to throw it back and protect his men — it exploded in his hand. He crawled back to his men under rifle fire. He died from his wounds on June 18, 1918, in a field hospital near Coulommiers, France, with his brother, U.S. Army Brigadier General Charles H. Cole at his side. He is buried in the Aisne-Marne Cemetery, Belleau, France.
For his actions on June 10, 1918 during the Battle of Belleau Wood, Cole received both the Navy Cross and the Army Distinguished Service Cross.
Cole's Navy Cross citation reads:
- In the Bois de Belleau, France, on June 10, 1918, his unusual heroism in leading his company under heavy fire enabled it to fight with exceptional effectiveness. He personally worked fearlessly until he was mortally wounded.
His Distinguished Service Cross citation reads:
- In the Bois de Belleau, on June 10th 1918, displayed extraordinary heroism in organizing positions, rallying his men and disposing of his guns, continuing to expose himself fearlessly until he fell. He suffered the loss of his right hand and received wounds in upper arm and both thighs.”
- Louis Cukela, recipient of both the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy Medal of Honor for Belleau Wood
- Battle of Belleau Wood
- Malcolm, The Hingham Journal, 2001.
- Howe, Mark Anthony De Wolfe (1922). Memoirs of the Harvard Dead in the War Against Germany, Vol 3. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
- Cole, Captain Edward B., USMC (1917). Field Book for Machine Gunners. Kansas City: Hudson.
- Nilo, James R. (July 1993). "World War I 75 Years Ago: Attack on Soissons" (reprinted by Leatherneck as "Today In USMC History: July 18, 1918"). Leatherneck Magazine. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
Marine Major Edward B. Cole, commanding the 6th Machine Gun Bn, while leading an attack on some enemy machine guns on June 10 in those woods, was severely wounded. A German grenade wounded him in the foot, and a second one landed in front of him. While trying to throw it back, it exploded and riddled him with shrapnel. Gen Cole was at his bedside when he died on June 18.
- "Cole". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Naval History & Heritage Command, Department of the Navy. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
- "Namesake — Major Edward Ball Cole". Destroyer History Foundation. 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
- "6th Machine Gun Battalion, USMC, Individual Members: Major Edward Ball Cole". History and Lore of the 6th Machine Gun Battalion. Retrieved 5 Feb 2016.
- Malcolm, Dorothy V. (November 8, 2001). "Recalling World War I through the letters of Maj. Edward Ball Cole". The Hingham Journal. Hingham, Massachusetts. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
- Malcolm-Bunyard, Dorothy (June 2003). "The Cole Papers: World War I revisited". The Hingham Journal. Hingham, Massachusetts: Community Newspaper Co. p. 8. Retrieved 2008-10-26.