Talk:List of last World War I veterans by country

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Missing countries[edit]

Some countries are missing (most were part of a other country in this time):

  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Belarus
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • Georgia
  • Greece
  • Indian Empire
  • Iraq
  • Iran
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lithuania
  • Macedonia
  • Moldavian/Moldova
  • Montenegro
  • Palestine
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Syria
  • Tajikistan
  • Turkmenistan
  • Uzbekistan
  • Yemen

Somebody know anything of veterans of this countries? Have I forgotten a country? Can we sure that a country of this list never had WWI-Veterans?

How the hell could you forget Russia? I guess they don't have proper data of that though, because of revolution. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:14, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

B.t.w.: Doesn't it make sense to split last Czechoslovakia Veteran in to the last veteran from Czech Republic and the last from Slovakia? Statistician 20:16, 12 September 2007 (CET)

Why those four in capitals: explain? Extremely sexy 17:37, 13 September 2007 (UTC)

This are the countries with a larger number of solders Allies_of_World_War_I#Personnel_and_casualties_of_the_Allied_powers.
Btw.: In the Book "Der Aufstieg des Faschismus" ( I found that in 1915 2.000 finish men came to Berlin and were trained to fought against russia als a special "Jägerbataillon" (hunter / ranger? bataillon).
Statistician 15:44, 14 September 2007 (CET)

There wasn't an Israel until 1948. It was the same thing as Palestine. Bkatcher (talk) 04:27, 22 January 2008 (UTC)

Japan participated almost from the first day of the war. They mounted the land operation to eliminate the German presence in China (suffering combat deaths there), conducted extensive anti-raider operations throughout the Pacific and Indian Oceans, and lost a ship in the Mediterranean Sea (also with deaths if I remember it correctly), yet they have been omitted from the listing. Also, China sent significant amounts of labor troops to France as their contribution, and they too were in the war for a significant period of time, yet they too have been omitted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:51, 5 May 2011 (UTC)

Unreferenced entries[edit]

I've standardized the references and added the flags and links for all the countries. A number of the entries on this table are unreferenced but, I suspect, a little digging will turn up sources for most of them. I'll try and get on that a little later. Canadian Paul 16:47, 9 August 2007 (UTC)

The flags certainly add a bit of colour. As far as the references go, I looked for the ones on the biography pages if they had one. Alternatively I looked on the deaths pages. Amazingly none of Emiliano Mercado's references stated that he was the last Puerto Rican vet. I suppose it was taken for granted, so I used Ders des Ders.

The entries awaiting citations do so because they had references that showed they existed, served for whoever, and were centenarians, but not that they were the last of their country. Given all the John Ross arguments over on 'oldest living by country' I know you appreciate that reasoning. Captain celery 23:15, 9 August 2007 (UTC)Captain celery

Absolutely, and when I get some more time I'll look for some references myself. I'm not going to delete any of the entries, since I feel that listing the last surviving veterans is far more important than guessing who the oldest person in a country is, I just wanted to acknowledge which ones needed it. Very nice job on all of this, by the way. Canadian Paul 23:21, 9 August 2007 (UTC)

Thanks very much. That makes it all worthwhile. I thought that the 'list of last notable events' was top heavy with veterans, and since they were mostly WW1, I moved them across. I see you've referenced Panculescu, which I was about to do, since I doubt the one who was alive in 98 is now. I think the others uncited are on probation for now. Some might not make it but we'll see. And I think it's OK to guess who the oldest people in countries are, as long as they're educated guesses. Captain celery 00:07, 10 August 2007 (UTC)Captain celery

For the reasons discussed here, maybe we should remove Robert Ruttledge? Or maybe add a note that he was the last known survivor? This might be construed as original research though... Cheers, CP 20:30, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

I don't really want to add notes because it's always possible that we are wrong. Who knew that Yakup Satar would turn up? Being a British 'subject', we have more of a handle on Ruttledge than on Jose Ladeira, so if one goes, then both should go. Captain celery 01:54, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

That's true, but I'm just thinking that we'll never find a source that says he was the last veteran from the Republic of Ireland... we have a source that says he's dead, but I don't even recall if it even mentioned he was a veteran. Cheers, CP 02:04, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
Herewith Robert Ruttledge's Irish Times obituary (link to free version attached [1]) which refers to his service in WWI. Details of WWI campaign medals awarded can be found in the National Archive under reference 372/17.
Walter Humphry's birth and death detals can be found at (alas subsription now required)[2]with reference to his war service at a UK Department for Trade & Industry article[3] which I hope serves as citation enough. 23:09, 23 August 2007 (UTC)Bruce
The reason I didn't cite Humphreys is because the accesible reference didn't explicitly state that he was the last from Wales, and from the way you've put it, it doesn't seem like the Ancestry one does either, subscription or no. The offline source may do, but of course an internet link is preferable.
It's funny how Ruttledge's obituary focuses more on his ornithology, just like the Kark article is about his publishing. Good that they lived rich and varied lives, but WW1 service should be more of a talking point, especially in the 21st century. It's a bit pessimistic to say that we'll never find better citations but I accept the possibility.
Then again, I have used Ders des Ders despite it being French. At least that's easily translatable, unlike the Serbian reference that Paul added for Radovanovic. But that was the best one to be found so maybe we should accept inferior citations since they're better than nothing. Captain celery 22:23, 24 August 2007 (UTC)
I've cross-referenced the surviving UK veterans, then those who died in 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004 and 2003 with the 1837-1983 Birth Index and Walter Humphrys is definitely the most recently deceased Welsh-born (in Cardiff) veteran to appear - unless, of course, there is another undiscovered Welsh veteran out there. His war campaign medal details are at the National Archive catalogue reference WO372/10. Humphrys died in London which may explain why his passing and status went unrecorded at the time. 21:27, 28 August 2007 (UTC)Bruce
I don't doubt your research, but I wanted an online citation that would make it clear. If people have to go on to the National Archive then they're having to go to some of the trouble that you did. But as you say, his death wasn't noted so it may be the best we have. 23:46, 28 August 2007 (UTC)Captain celery
Not to mention that it's original research. Cheers, CP 02:01, 5 September 2007 (UTC)


I've moved this page from Last World War I veteran by country to Last surviving World War I veteran by country. I feel this is more descriptive and suits the article better. -- Floaterfluss (talk) (contribs) 17:11, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

I'm not sure that it adds anything, but if you think it does, it certainly doesn't take anything away, so it's fine with me. Captain celery 01:11, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

When this article was last named, there were still surviving WWI veterans. The last WWI veteran died 4 Feb 2012 and there are no longer any surviving WWI veterans. I've moved this page from Last surviving World War I veteran by country to List of last World War I veterans to die by country as there are no more surviving WWI veterans and the article title became inaccurate with the passing of Florence Green, 4 Feb 2012. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Johnd39 (talkcontribs) 22:28, 3 November 2016 (UTC)

Question about countries in the list[edit]

What does the country signify in the list? Is it where the person resides now, where they were born, where they lived at the time of the war, or some other possibility? Could someone who knows write a brief lead-in to the list to clarify? Thanks — Bellhalla (talk) 03:43, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

I don't want to diminish anyone's status on the list but why are Puerto Rico and Newfoundland considered countries on this list? (talk) 15:08, 12 March 2009 (UTC)

Both were dependencies that had high likelihood of becoming independent states. Neither was fully incorporated into their colonial overlords.Pbrower2a (talk) 02:15, 1 March 2011 (UTC)

Newfoundland was a British Colony. It was never a country. Newfoundland joined Canada on March 31, 1949, becoming Canada's tenth province. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:05, 5 May 2011 (UTC)

To be more precise, Newfoundland was a Dominion, having equal standing at the time with Canada. The name "Newfoundland and Labrador" and the modern provincial flag, though, I agree are anachronistic. D. J. Cartwright (talk) 06:30, 8 October 2011 (UTC)


Why are the UK home nations listed individually in this list, when the British Empire declared war on Germany in 1914, not England, Wales, etc. This should be changed. (talk) 22:10, 18 June 2008 (UTC)

It makes no sense to me either. England and Scotland were not separate countries in WWI and are still part of the United Kingdom today. As no one has made any arguments against this, I shall merge the categories at some point soon allowing time for arguments against. —Preceding unsigned comment added by LondonJae (talkcontribs) 15:50, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

Unfortunately Florence Green has died can someone please remove her from the list.

Sorry I know it's a bit stupid of me to post after you've made the change but there was a similar discussion about the living veterans article about a similar thing (and therefor thought I'd already posted here). Anyway, to my point: The Irish case we have listed was from Northern Ireland. I'm not entirely against removing the Welsh/Scottish/Irish entries, but I think they should be included in a footnote on the United Kingdom's entry. SiameseTurtle (talk) 11:25, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
I have no qualms about them being listed as a footnote to the entry as that would be consistent with both state and nationality rather than considering them as countries in their own right. Jae 12:40, 24 January 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by LondonJae (talkcontribs)

Ulster Banner and St Patrick's saltire[edit]

WWI ended in 1918 NI came in to existence in 1921 so how can you say that and as for the Ulster banner was only used from 1953 to 1972. BigDuncTalk 16:26, 19 June 2008 (UTC)

During WW1 the whole of Ireland was represented by the flag. However, the article is about a candidate who was the last surviving in Northern Ireland, not Ireland. Regardless, Northern Ireland, although not in existence then was still represented by the flag. Secondly, the flag used on the page is no longer the Ulster Banner. SiameseTurtle (talk) 16:40, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm afraid you are mistaken during WW1 Ireland was under the Union Flag. BigDuncTalk 16:44, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
In case you haven't noticed, Wales, England and Scotland are not represented by the union flag. This is to distinguish between them. During WW1, similar to how England, Wales and Scotland have their own flags and the Union Jack to represent them, Ireland was represented by St Patrick's cross. This is why it is used on the page. SiameseTurtle (talk) 17:13, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
Can you provide a source for that if not I intend to remove it. BigDuncTalk 17:31, 19 June 2008 (UTC)
It appears I cannot find a source. However it was apparently used as an unofficial flag at that time, and is used on several pages to represent Ireland as a whole during this time. For example The Third Home Rule Bill. SiameseTurtle (talk) 20:49, 20 June 2008 (UTC)


I have restored the flags, as I see no prior discussion or consensus on the issue. Personally, I am marginally in favour of the flags remaining, but please let us make a consensus decision on this rather than edit warring. Mayalld (talk) 12:16, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

I have no intention of edit warring but this came about with an editor using controversial flags to represent Northern Ireland the Ulster Banner and Saint Patrick's Flag which is also in breach of WP:FLAG Overbroad use of flags with politicized connotations. BigDuncTalk 12:40, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I suspected that may well have been the reason, but I felt that it was better to wait for you to explicitly say so. Deleting all the flags from the article just because you didn't get the one that you object to removed is rather WP:POINTy. Mayalld (talk) 12:44, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
And making up a flag because not having one leaves a gap in a table is what exactly? BigDuncTalk 12:51, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
OK, I don't think this is getting anywhere. We could clearly go round in circles on this issue forever! You clearly have a strongly Irish Nationalist POV (which is fine by me, I'm English by birth, and part Irish by descent, and I don't see it as my business to tell people how they should be governed), but I do feel that you are allowing that POV to cloud your judgement. Trying to get the article to reflect your POV is not constructive.
As I see it, at the time of WWI, the whole of Ireland was a constituent part of the UK (no comment on whether that was right and proper, or not), and we should reflect the FACTS, not how we wished things to have been.
On that basis;
  1. There was no entity called Northern Ireland at the end of WWI.
  2. Ireland was a constituent part of the UK, and represented in the flag of the UK by the St Patrick Cross.
  3. The person named was the last living survivor in the whole of Ireland, not just in the north.
On that basis, we should amend the entry to Ireland, and use the St Patrick flag. Mayalld (talk) 13:01, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I would tend to agree with you on some of your points as I said the same. The flag was used unoffically so therefore is contensious the only official flag was the Union Jack and you don't want to put that in the article beside Ireland as it leads to confusion this is why the MOS is here for us to use. What we need to get here is consistency all the flags represented are the flags of today, Algeria, Barbados, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Germany, Guyana, Hungary, Italy, Jamaica, Netherlands, Poland, Puerto Rico, Senegal, Serbia, South Africa so should we use the flags from the period to depict them or there modern one? BigDuncTalk 14:15, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Compromise way forward[edit]

I've made a change to the article to reflect the fact that it is nonsense to talk about NI in the context of WWI. Given the the source indicates that this gentleman was also the last in the whole of Ireland, that was easy enough. I've also amended the flag icon to the 4 provinces flag (I understand that this is even less contentious than the saltire).

I do think that we need to avoid getting too hung up on deeper meanings to flags. The fact that a flag is unofficial doesn't of necessity make it contovertial, and to be honest most people in the world outside the troubles can't see what all the fuss is about.

I would agree that we should move to use historic flags in the list. Mayalld (talk) 14:40, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Rather than use made-up flags, or flags which were wrong, I think it is better meantime to remove the flags altogether. If we must have flags then we must use accurate historical flags, and there was no flag for Ireland in that era as it was not a country yet. This shows the difficulty of using flags in articles like this. I've removed them meantime. --John (talk) 15:26, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks John exactly what I was saying. BigDuncTalk 15:27, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
Nobody used made up flags. Nobody used flags that were "wrong". Outside of the NI issue, people just don't get all hung-up on flags. It is regrettable in the extreme that we seem to be going down a path where because some Irish Nationalists can't agree on flags, the rest of the world isn't allowed to use them. I shan't trouble you further on this, as I don't have the time or energy to deal with POV pushing here. Mayalld (talk) 15:37, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
You may call it POV pushing if you like; I call it accuracy. I do get hung up on accuracy. Several of the flags were wrong; the Germany and South Africa ones jumped out as anachronisms. Senegal wasn't a country in the WW1 era. Using a made up flag for Ireland to describe a time before Ireland had a flag is unencyclopedic. There were probably other errors too. Rather than use the wrong flags or anachronistic ones, I think it better if we use no flags at all. --John (talk) 15:43, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
But that you had just said it. Instead you elected to simply jump in and make an edit where you knew that there was no consensus as yet. BTW, you might like to go back in and fix the change that I made to move NI to Ireland in the table, because I sure as hell can't be bothered cleaning up after you Mayalld (talk) 15:47, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

I did. BigDuncTalk 15:49, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

You changed the name, you sure as hell didn't fix the alphabetical order Mayalld (talk) 15:51, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
I fixed the order, thanks for pointing that out. --John (talk) 18:08, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Three UK veterans remain alive[edit]

As you can read out of all the news article, only 3 WWI Britsh veterans are alive as of 13.1.09 So please undo the edit here's another link: (so if one of the four dies, how many remain?;-) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:47, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Indeed that article says three. However, there are also other reliable sources that say four. Please don't keep changing it against consensus. Mayalld (talk) 13:27, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Ok I won't change it anymore, but it would be good if ppl could come up with a consensus of what is a WW veteran and what not. I guess we should go after the official counting of the government. So what do they say?--(sorry, I can't log in at the moment with my account) (talk) 13:47, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

They don't. Basically, both Stone and Hughes were in training at the Armistice. Stone is mentioned by the popular press, Hughes isn't.
As far as I can tell, the consensus here is that if they had signed on the dotted line before the Armistice, they are a veteran. Mayalld (talk) 13:55, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Had to create a new account..anyhow.. Then who will the UK grant the State funeral? I know that in other countries they differenciate between those who had actually fought in the war and those were, just like you said, in training and therefore enlisted soldiers but without "fighting experience". --Pompom105 (talk) 14:05, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Nobody. They have already said that there will be no state funeral for any particular veteran, but that there will be a national memorial service at Westminster Abbey after the last veteran dies.
Given that the govt gave implicit recognition to Mr Stone back in November, it is difficult to see how they could avoid recognising Mr Hughes if he is the last. Mayalld (talk) 14:25, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Thomas Shaw Is Not From Ireland[edit]

As far as I can see from the table we are refering to legal countries. Ireland is a Republic covering much of the island of Ireland. Thomas Shaw is from Northern Ireland. This is part of the United Kingdom. He was born and died in Bangor, Northern Ireland, UK. Unless someone can show me how he is from the Republic of Ireland, then I shall remove him as he is deceased and would thus not qualify as the last survivor of the United KIngdom. I'm pretty sure you'll find there is someone else who would be covered as Ireland's oldest veteren, whilst the Republic of Ireland did not exist at the time of the First World War, I feel it would be acceptable to keep the category itself as we also have such countries as the Ukraine in the list which was part of the Russian Empire at the time. Any comments? Jae 11:30, 24 January 2009 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by LondonJae (talkcontribs)

I think the issue here is that the countries are listed as they are now, not as they were then, which is causing problems. Perhaps a page revamp is in order: Changing the countries to those back in 1918 (before the Treaty of Versailles). Then adding footnotes to note any people considered the last in their own country now: Such as Austria, and Hungary allowing August Bischof to be listed too. SiameseTurtle (talk) 11:38, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
That is a very good idea and would clear up a lot of inconsistencies Jae 12:36, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
He is listed as the last Irish veteran because back in 1918, there was no Northern Ireland: He was an Irish veteran who lived in the North of the country. He was the last veteran from the island of Ireland (no longer a country of its own right). SiameseTurtle (talk) 11:41, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
There was no country of Ireland in 1918 (nor had there been one since 1801), and my proposal was for him to be considered a veteran of the United Kingdom (as consistent with his country of origin and the country he died in), so I don't quite see what point you are trying to make. If we are to start listing people by geographic body we could be here forever more. Jae 12:37, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
The list has him being from the republic of Ireland when that didn't exist until 1949. Considering he was born in Belfast and died in County Down in now NI. I fail to see why he should be put down as a ROI war veteran when 1, There was no republic of Ireland until 1949 2, Ireland was part of the UK then 3, even using modern boundries he's British due to being from Belfast. I think what would be best is get rid of the tricolour and change the link to the UK of GB and Ireland. The C of E. God Save The Queen! (talk) 19:13, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Allingham Dead[edit]

Henry Allingham died in his sleep about half an hour ago. I have amended the table which read that there were three living veterans from the UK to two. (talk) 08:08, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

It was reported about half an hour before your post... he died at 3.10am BST. PhantomSteve (Contact Me, My Contribs) 08:53, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Saci Ben Hocine Mahdi[edit]

Can anyone find a reference to the above which confirms that he was a soldier in the First World War? I can find a few references that show that he was born in 1898, and still alive (vivant en) in 1998. However, apart from photograph showing him with medals, holding a photo (presumably of himself) in uniform, I can't find anything!

Incidently, that photo is at if anyone wants to look at it.

I suggest that unless we can find a source which shows that he served in one of the Armed Forces of World War I (wth or without a date of death), we need to remove him.

If anyone can find a reliable source of information showing that he is a WW1 vet, then they can add it, otherwise I think we should delete his entry. -- PhantomSteve (Contact Me, My Contribs) 23:17, 27 July 2009 (UTC)

Pierre Picault and the issue of the last French veteran[edit]

Dave (if I may use your real name, I'm Lee by the way), I can see why you've reverted my recent changes to this page. However I don't think your objections are entirely clear cut. The source is a blog, but they are allowed if the blogger is an expert, and Mr Osbourne certainly does seem to have a lot of history degrees. Secondly, if it was worded "Wikipedia says this, Wikipedia says that" then obviously it would be redundant. But what he's actually doing is reporting what is on the Talk Page. Namely Laurent Toussaint telling Bart Versieck that Pierre Picault is a World War I veteran. So it is not as circular as it seems. You probably realised this since you acknowledged my 'good faith'. There just wasn't enough space in Edit Summary to explain my reasoning. (talk) 13:00, 14 August 2008 (UTC)Captain celery

It isn't entirely circular, but neither is it a reliable source. At present, all we have is a rumour that this guy exists, and that rumour has been boosted by the previous insertion on this page. Whilst Mr Osbourne may be an expert (or he may not), the fact that he only actually blogged this once WP had "confirmed" it makes it a very suspect source. If true, there will doubtless be other sources to be found, and we should look for those sources before adding this text. Mayalld (talk) 13:06, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
I wouldn't say that it is still just a rumour. It was, but now we only need to rely on the testimony of Bart and Laurent Toussaint, who I think are beyond reproach. Mr Toussaint, as a gerontologist, must have access to France's list of everyone over the age of 108, and Mr Picault must have been on it when it was released at the end of September last year. (talk) 13:23, 14 August 2008 (UTC)Captain celery
Whilst I would certainly accept that M Toussaint is an expert, and that if he says Picault exists and is that old, he probably exists and is that old. There are, however, two problems;
  1. I see no reliable sources that show that he has said this.
  2. If we prove that he is in fact 109 years old, it still doesn't show that he is actually a WWI veteran (there are many reasons why he may not actually have served
Mayalld (talk) 13:41, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
As far as 2. goes, Mr Toussaint confirmed he is a vet. But admittedly 1. still applies, beyond Bart's word on the talk page that is. (talk) 14:20, 14 August 2008 (UTC)Captain celery
Where did he confirm this, and on which talk page did Bart say this? Mayalld (talk) 14:35, 14 August 2008 (UTC)
On the Surviving Veterans talk page. Where it was confirmed you'd have to ask him. (talk) 15:15, 14 August 2008 (UTC)Captain celery =>

Pierre Picault: WWI veteran?


I note that Wikipedia recently added Pierre Picault, which cited a blog, which cited Wikipedia...a circular citation.

This is what Laurent Toussaint said to me about Pierre Picault in June:

The last one is Pierre Picault born 27/02/1899 also incorporated in avril 1918 and could may be an official "poilus" !

It seems that this case is under investigation, and when the time is right, hopefully, there will be media coverage. Until then, we have Mr. Toussaint's statement above, which seems to indicate that not only is Pierre a veteran, but might qualify as a "poilus" (served over 90 days in combat).

Any updates, Laurent?

Regards Moderator

Extremely sexy (talk) 12:48, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Having come here upon doing some research on Frank Buckles, I did new searches in French and English on Pierre Picault and came up with nothing (other than the current linked source and a bunch of related circular sources) that documents his being a veteran. Of course, as already recognized, neither Picault nor Goux were veterans by the French definition. Given this, wouldn't it make sense to add a record for Lazare Ponticelli with an explanation of the difference? As I see it, the article would gain both accuracy and completeness in this way.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 18:19, 8 March 2011 (UTC)

There being no objection, I added a record for Lazare Ponticelli.Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 17:18, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

Proposal for what to do when the final veteran of WW1 dies[edit]

At the talk page of List of surviving veterans of World War I‎, I have started a discussion about what to do when the final veteran dies.

My proposal is at the article's talk page, and your input would be appreciated.

Hopefully, it'll be a long time before we have to implement any decision made, but I feel we need to discuss it - especially as someone specifically asked about it.

Thanks -- PhantomSteve (Contact Me, My Contribs) 17:52, 8 September 2009 (UTC)

Franz Kunstler[edit]

Franz Kunstler was born in Sosd which is in modern-day Romania. As this list shows the last veterans by country rather than by force served (including many that did not exist in 1918 - Poland, Ukraine, Slovenia etc), by this criterion Kunstler should be listed as the last Romanian veteran rather than Gheorghe Panculescu, and Gergely Molnar (born Kiskundorozsma, Szeged) shown as the last Hungarian.Brucexyz (talk) 23:24, 6 May 2011 (UTC)

Renaming the article[edit]

This title is called "List of last surviving World War I veterans by country", yet since the death of Claude Choules, Florence Green has been removed from the list, and the page is described as being a list of "last surviving combat veterans".

If the title of the page is to remain as it is, Florence Green's name should be moved back into the list as the UK's "last surviving World War I veteran". If however, it is decided that the list should remain as it is, the page's title should be changed to "List of last surviving World War I combat veterans by country" so that the title accurately represents what the page displays. Burbridge92 (talk) 21:48, 7 May 2011 (UTC)

  • This change was done unilaterally and without consensus. Parsing out who is a combat veteran and who isn't is not part of the scope of this list. Green should be in the list. -LtNOWIS (talk) 01:24, 8 May 2011 (UTC)
    • Thanks you for setting things straight. I thought as much myself. Burbridge92 (talk) 07:53, 8 May 2011 (UTC)

Lazare Ponticelli and Pierre Picault[edit]

Although the two French veterans listed are deemed to be the "last French veteran" by different levels of recognition, is it really necessary to have them both featured on the list? I mean, some would argue that if we're going to list different veterans by different levels of qualification we should still have Claude Choules on the list representing the United Kingdom, as he was the UK's last combative veteran. However, the list is meant to be the last surviving veteran of the First World War overall, not the last surviving veteran by different recognitions. Burbridge92 (talk) 08:32, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

You appear to have missed it (based on creating a redundant heading), but there is a documented discussion of this issue with respect specifically to French veterans. See I am not aware that there is such a debate for the U.K., so that's a red herring. As it were, the record for Ponticelli is unambiguous while Picault's name is from a single, contested source. Truth or consequences-2 (talk) 14:08, 17 September 2011 (UTC)
In which case that logic needs to be included on the actual page (i.e. in a footnote). "Last to be officially recognized as poilu" is not sufficient explanation for why the difference must be taken into account. The statement "it's been discussed and agreed upon" doesn't make up for it either, as that information needs to be immediately accessible to the readers if (as indicated) there is a reason why either individual can be considered as France's final WWI veteran. Burbridge92 (talk) 22:31, 26 January 2012 (UTC)
Also, there have been various disputes on Wikipedia with regards to Claude Choules and Florence Green, on this page and the List of surviving veterans of World War I page. Those ended in a different conclusion, which has no bearing on this issue, all that is needed here is a reference on the page. Burbridge92 (talk) 15:56, 27 January 2012 (UTC)


This table is, frankly, a bit of an inconsistent mess. As several others have commented above, it is anachronistic (in that it includes countries that either did not exist in WWI or were not directly involved in the conflict), incomplete (in that it lacks certain major participating powers such as Japan) or downright inaccurate (the Netherlands were neutral in the War).

Lacking strong objections, I propose that the list be corrected to remove anachronisms, formatted to reflect the nations - or the polities - which the veterans served. Thus, the entries for Czechoslovakia, Poland, Slovenia, Estonia, the Philippines and the Ukraine should be omitted, while the "Russian Federation," "Turkey" and "Newfoundland and Labrador" entries be corrected to the period names of the nations. Ravenswing 10:06, 29 February 2012 (UTC)

  • There, done. A few explanations: Austria and Hungary were, legally, independent states united in personal union under the Habsburg Emperor. Canada, India, Newfoundland and New Zealand were self-governing Dominions, while the Czech Legion and Polish forces fought independently and were granted co-belligerent status at the table at Versailles. Finally, I put in lines for significant warring powers such as Japan, Greece, Bulgaria, Brazil, India and Montenegro, for which it should be possible to research who the last surviving veterans were; I left out the cavalcade of small nations which declared war just before the end, and which never had troops in action. Ravenswing 01:00, 3 March 2012 (UTC)
Well done. Bkatcher (talk) 01:58, 3 March 2012 (UTC)
Concerning Austria and Hungary you are not entirely right. Although both entities had their own prime minister and parliaments they were not just bound together in the person of the Emperor-King but also by a real union, with a common foreign and, in the context of the article of some relevance, a common defense policy. Gugganij (talk) 12:58, 12 June 2012 (UTC)
And the various constituent nations of the British Empire pitched in to the war, under Kitchener's command. Still doesn't make it de jure. Ravenswing 14:42, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Puerto Rico?[edit]

I realize that soldiers from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico would have fought for some other country (usually the United States), but it would be nice to acknolwedge Emiliano Mercado del Toro of Puerto Rico, who lived well past his 115th birthday and was the last surviving Puerto Rican WWI veteran. Comments? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:27, 29 March 2012 (UTC)

I believe the list usually goes by which Army in which they were enlisted in, nothing more. Bkatcher (talk) 20:58, 29 March 2012 (UTC)
  • Mercado del Toro wasn't the last surviving United States WWI veteran, pure and simple. Puerto Rico has been a part of the US since the 19th century, and its residents have all been US citizens since March of 1917. It's no more appropriate to have a separate listing for Puerto Rico than it would be for Massachusetts, California or New York. Ravenswing 04:24, 30 March 2012 (UTC)

China and Japan[edit]

The last veterans of China and Japan have been added. However, they are unsourced, and according to their articles, while they were WWI veterans who lived to be quite old, there's nothing that says they were the last surviving veterans.Bkatcher (talk) 20:39, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

  • As for China, According to this link, one Zhu Guisheng (1896 - 2003) served in the Chinese Labour Corps during WWI. Not only was he the last surviving member of the Corps and but if his service is legitimate he might also be the last Chinese Veteran. Should the last member of this unit be considered the last soldier to serve on behalf of the Chinese government during the First World War? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Lemunz (talkcontribs) 00:07, 19 September 2012 (UTC)
  • On a different note: according to his article on the Japanese wiki , there was a soldier named Ito Shinobu (March 15, 1895 - November 17, 1995) who graduated from the Japanese Military Academy in 1915 and lived eleven days longer than Matsuda Chiaki. Lemunz (talk) 06:45, 26 January 2016 (UTC)
  • Another veteran who lived longer than Chiaki would be WWII Lt. General Hiroshi Watanabe, (Nov 14, 1894 - Jan 19, 1997) at 102 years old. There are not many sources for him that I can find yet, just a short bio on his WWII service [4] and another that further outlines his military career [5]. He was born in the Yamaguchi Prefecture, graduated the military academy on May 25, 1915 and was comissioned as a lieutenant in December. During WWII, he served in several positions, including Chief of Staff of the Fourth Army. Lemunz (talk) 00:29, 10 May 2016 (UTC)
  • Today I came across a Japanese article [6] from Sept 15, 2004 about a 106-year-old man named Yasuichi Sasaki (佐々木安一) of the Yamaguchi prefecture. It states that he was born Jan 10, 1898 and, when translated, says "in 1916, volunteered for military service at the age of 18. In the following year he married with his wife of the same age. It was convened by the Siberian soldiers in 1919, but it was immediately decided to withdraw and escaped from Siberia. Within a year after that, he was discharged as a corporal corporation and returned to his house. "I thought of becoming a soldier because I did not like farmers very much, but when I went to Siberia at that time, I guess I was going to have a different fate than before." This article [7] reports that he died July 26, 2006, the oldest male in the prefecture. This sounds like he could be one of, if not the last Japanese WWI vet. Lemunz (talk) 22:32, 5 December 2018 (UTC)


A candidate for the last Bulgarian veteran might be that of Ivan Mihailov (1896 - 1990) who served in the Bulgarian Army — Preceding unsigned comment added by Lemunz (talkcontribs) 01:53, 7 September 2012 (UTC)

If he died in 1990, it's likely he was NOT the last suriving Bulgarian veteran. Bkatcher (talk) 02:50, 7 September 2012 (UTC)
  • We can only mention "candidates" if reliable sources do; speculation is beyond our remit. That being said, Bkatcher is right: the odds are demographically overwhelming that the last Bulgarian WWI veteran survived into last decade. Ravenswing 04:52, 7 September 2012 (UTC)
  • I merely suggested that it might be possible for Mihailov to be the last veteran. It is listed that Masaichi Niimi, who died in 1993, is the last veteran who served in the Japanese forces. I believe it is possible that the last Bulgarian veteran died 3 years earlier at the most. If not the last, we can be assured that the last Bulgarian died must have died no earlier than 1990. According to this link, Mihailov served as a Lieutenant for the Bulgarian Artillery in WWI. Now as a side note, If we are adding the individuals based on reliable sources, why is Xue Yue on the list? I haven't been able to find any evidence that he had served in WWI.
As for Niimi, Japan was not one of the major combatants of the war, and Bulgaria was, so there would be many more Bulgarian vets. An academic point, as we have no proof that Mihailov was the last, or even one of the last, just well known. Bkatcher (talk) 02:06, 8 September 2012 (UTC)
I see no problem adding him in if there is a source and if later another is found to have died afterwards, then they could be added by that time. As well, the 3 others listed for Brazil, China & Japan should be sourced too as to be legit.That-Vela-Fella (talk) 19:29, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I have a big problem with that. It's like me saying I'm the only living American because I'm alone in the house right now and can't see anyone else. We'll include him when when he's officially recognized, not before. Bkatcher (talk) 20:16, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

On a different note, I was looking up the topic again, but translated the question into Bulgarian using google translate and found a forum, link, that describes one Santa Dimitar (right translation?) who was intervied in 1999 at 106 years old. There is also an article in 2001 [8] that talks about 106 year old Dimitar Iliev of Pirdop, Bulgaria (right translation?, Димитър Илиев от Пирдоп) celebrating his 107th birthday on April 25. The article, among other things, states that this man is a "veteran Of World War I, the oldest in the region" Lemunz (talk


The last vet who fought in the Hellenic Forces that I can find is Thrasyvoulos Tsakalotos (1897 - 1989) whose military career lasted from 1913 - 1952. He fought on the Macedonian front during WWI. There's another individual, Pafsanias Katsotas (1896 - 1991), whose military service lasted on and off from 1916 - 1950. According to this link, "On 20 December 1912, when the warships "Hesperia", "Macedonia", "Mycale" and "Amvrakia" arrived in occupied by the Turks, Chios, with the rank of Corporal led 40 Marines, took part in the attack [1] against Ottoman positions on the island. He graduated from the Academy in 1916 as a second lieutenant of infantry and took part in the First World War." So right now, the last Greek vet that I'm aware of was Mr. Katsotas (d. 1991). Should he be added to the list now? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Lemunz (talkcontribs) 04:05, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

  • I'd say go with whomever is verified. If we know for a fact that Tsakalotos qualifies, then he's the man unless definitive proof of another surfaces. Ravenswing 20:23, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
    • According to this link [9], in June 16, 2004, there was 104 year old veteran named George Giannitsaki (Γιώργο Γιαννιτσάκη) who was living in Peristeri, Athens since 1972. He was born in Asia Minor and was a soldier from 1916 to 1922, ultimately rejoining the Greek Army in 1941 and serving at the Second Battle of El Alamein. I couldn't find out anything else beyond this. Lemunz (talk) 22:50, 16 January 2016 (UTC)
      • Also, according to this link [10] a Greek monk named Hesychios Grigoriatis (Ἡσύχιος Γρηγοριάτης, 1896 - May 14, 1999) was a soldier for around six years before he entered the Osiou Gregoriou monastery in 1924. That put his enlistment date sometime around 1918. There's also a pdf file [11] from the University of Thesally that describes a Radiologist named Filoktitis Paramythiotis (Φιλοκτήτης Παραμυθιώτης, 1893 - September 19, 1996) who joined the Army in 1918 after graduating Medical School. He also served in the Asia Minor Campaign as a doctor in the Archipelago Division. Finally, another link [12] describes a veteran named Christos Papantoniou (Χρήστος Παπαντωνίου, 1890 - July 2, 1995) who served in the Greek Army during the Macedonian Struggle, Balkan wars, WWI, Asia Minor campaign, and the Greek expedition to Ukraine during the Russian Civil War. Lemunz (talk) 00:16, 11 November 2018 (UTC)


The last vet that I have found so far who fought with the Montenegrin forces is Danilo Dajković (1895 - 1993) link (original in Serbian). According to his wiki article, "He participated in the Balkan and First World War as a soldier of the Montenegrin army." In addition to the possibility of being the last soldier of his nation's WWI fighting forces, he is one of the last surviving veterans of the Balkan Wars that I know of (next to Hüseyin Kaçmaz, 1884 - 1994).

  • Do we have a reliable source for that? Obviously the Serbian Wikipedia article wouldn't count. Ravenswing 02:02, 5 July 2013 (UTC)

Apart from several sources and photographs claiming that he was the "Metropolitan of Montenegro and the Littoral" between 1961 and 1990, is appears that the majority, if not all the info found in the article, was obtained from the Serbian Orthodox Church website. There also atleast one book written about him [13] and another of the "dead martyrs and all the saints of the century and the burial of the brothers" [14] by Bishop Sava Vukovic where additional material could have been collected.

  • I'm sold; that's an obituary of the fellow from the website of a major church. Ravenswing 18:53, 5 July 2013 (UTC)

Indian Empire[edit]

Well, Robert Francis Ruttledge (1899 - 2002) was a British officer who served in the Indian Army during WWI. He enlisted in 1918 and received the WWI campaign medals. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Lemunz (talkcontribs) 03:11, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

another Veteran for German Empire[edit]

The list contains veterans that die in 1999 and such that reach a age of 99 years. So the german veteran Ernst Jünger is one of them, because he is a surviver of the great war, died in 1998 and reach a age of 102 years. Ernst Jünger (* 29 March 1895 in Heidelberg, † 17 February 1998 in Riedlingen)

Forget it, the list contains only the one per country who has survived the others...sorry, my fault. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:56, 9 February 2013 (UTC)

What date should the flags be from?[edit]

The flags seem inconsistent. Should each entry use the flag used on the 11 November 1918 by the country for which the person served? Gronky (talk) 03:12, 10 April 2013 (UTC)

I believe that would make more sense, the flag at the time. — AMK152 (tc) 22:00, 10 April 2013 (UTC)
Which flags are not 1918 ones? Bkatcher (talk) 11:26, 11 April 2013 (UTC)
I'll take a look again to get specifics, but one thing I noticed is that some flags are identified by year but the country had a different flag in January 1918 and December 1918. Gronky (talk) 18:28, 11 April 2013 (UTC)

Armenia & The Hejaz[edit]

It just came to my attention that Armenia and The Hejaz aren't represented on this list. According to the Allies of World War I, These states, along with 2 other states (Poland and Czechoslovakia), "were allowed to participate as winning nations to the peace treaties." Since the Polish Forces and the Czechoslovak Legions are already on the list, I think that these two new slots should be added also.

Final Veteran[edit]

Hello I am a fan of longevity cases spanning more than 100 years especially when a historical case is involved. It is my belief and I will lay out my case that Claude Choules is the last WW1 veteran. Firstly when looking at this complex case we must analyze what is a veteran of a conflict. Some people have argued that Florence Green is the last for being a member of the British Military. However I today can not serve as a national guardsmen on a base in Muncie Indiana and call myself a Iraq War Veteran. It is for that reason (with all do respect to her) I disqualify her as a veteran of the conflict, she is a veteran, not one of WW1, but a veteran non the less. Claude Choules falls next on the list, at first I was about to pull the card about being in the military and not in the conflict as he was in the Navy and give it to American Frank W. Buckles until I read that his ship saw action against a German Zeppelin I have respect for Florence Green but feel that the honor is due to Claude Choules (I Dan tha Man I (talk) 04:51, 25 July 2015 (UTC))

This has been discussed on Wikipedia for years. The general consensus is we count the last person on active duty in a combatant nation. Bkatcher (talk) 05:33, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
A number of editors over several articles have spent a lot of time and energy trying to discredit Florence Green, and you can read all their specious arguments in the archives. Yours is just another one, I'm afraid. No, you're right: you can't earn an Iraq Campaign Medal without having spent time in-country in Iraq. But "World War I veteran" is another thing entirely. The United States' criterion for receiving the World War I Victory Medal included anyone serving in the US armed forces, anywhere in the world, between the date the US entered the war to Armistice Day. The British criterion for the Victory Medal was any service between 5 August 1914 and 11 November 1918.

Ultimately, while I'm sure you hold to your opinion as to who deserves to be called a WWI veteran or not, the United Kingdom disagreed with you a century ago and does so now. Our consensus has been to follow the practice of the various governments as to whom they call veterans; we have no business making subjective decisions -- especially since, in the case of Green, so many seem founded on the notion that a mere woman could officially be the last WWI veteran is intolerable -- to overrule them. Ravenswing 22:25, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

I never knew that about the medals, although it to me seem like it should be Claude and I do believe it should be Claude if the government acknowledges Florence then who am I to over rule them. (I Dan tha Man I (talk) 05:10, 27 July 2015 (UTC))


Should we include a section on Azerbaijan? The Azerbaijan Democratic Republic declared its independence on May 28, 1918, the same day as Armenia and Georgia. After the war, The Allied Supreme Council granted Azerbaijan de facto recognition along with the other two countries. Ramazan Xəlilov (1901 - January 10, 1999) fought the Armenians in 1918 as a soldier in the "Lazgi regiment" of the ADR army [15][16]. According to this link, he served in WWI where, after training, he served at the Battle of Baku as part of the Azerbaijani forces of the coalition. If not for Azerbaijan, under which flag would his service fall under? Lemunz (talk) 02:28, 14 May 2016 (UTC)

Imperial dependencies[edit]

Ravenswing has reverted my (sourced) addition of the last Caribbean soldier from WWI. I'm aware of the previous discussions on this page, but this is ludicrous. The Colony of Jamaica may have been part of the British Empire, but it was obviously not part of Britain - to think otherwise is to fundamentally misunderstand the nature of empire. The idea that this information does not fit in this article is bizarre. Not only does this perpetuate systematic bias on Wiki but Stair (the man in question) clearly meets the criteria for notability in his own right. The WP:RS calls him the last veteran of his country remember. I'm not quite sure why the scope of this article should have been changed from "List of last surviving veterans by country" to "list of last surviving veterans by country of service", but to keep this curious position is harming the overall quality of the article.—Brigade Piron (talk) 08:35, 23 September 2016 (UTC)

  • I reverted it because longstanding consensus, over the years, is that this article is for countries that were during the War, or recognized at Versailles to be, sovereign or self-governing polities. Jamaica wasn't, any more than was Montserrat, Massachusetts, Manitoba or Murray, NSW. What is bizarre, if you would, is suggesting that Jamaica not being a sovereign entity in 1918 (and being a non-self-governing part of the United Kingdom) somehow constitutes "systemic bias," or that a native Jamaican wouldn't have been eligible to make the list if he'd outlived Florence Green. If you'd like to change that consensus to rename the article "List of last surviving World War I veterans by political subdivision," feel free to make that pitch. Ravenswing 17:36, 23 September 2016 (UTC)
    • I think you misunderstand the British Empire. Jamaica was a crown colony but clearly recognised as a polity in its own right, albeit one without independent foreign policy. The comparison with a mere administrative subdivision of a country does not stand up - British colonies had their own currencies, legal systems etc. Jamaica actually had its own parliament and its citizens did not have the same citizenship as Britons. Basically: Massachussets is an integral part of the United States; Jamaica has never been an integral part of the UK in the same way that, say, Dorset is. If the last Jamaican had survived Florence Green, it would be just as ludicrous to consider him as a "United Kingdom" veteran. That aside, is this is the consensus you refer to? Brigade Piron (talk) 20:45, 23 September 2016 (UTC)
      • (shrugs) I see no particular reason to debate your revisionist POV -- of course you can believe what you will -- but claiming consensus for your change of the entire scope of the article requires a good bit more than your own unsupported opinion. Jamaica was neither a sovereign country, a self-governing dominion of the stripe of Canada or Australia, or acknowledged at Versailles as claiming belligerent status, and whether it could contemporaneously be described as a "polity" likewise applied to my other examples. Ravenswing 22:25, 26 September 2016 (UTC)
        • I'm not quite sure how my "POV" is "revisionist" (you might like to read WP:GF by the way) and nor am I claiming that Jamaica was a 100% sovereign, independent state in WWI akin to Germany. What I am saying - and what you seem to be missing - is that being part of the British Empire did not make you British. Neither an anticolonial nationalist nor a die-hard imperialist would have denied this basic fact. On the other hand, coming from Massachusetts did make you American, as coming from Manitoba made you Canadian. On the subject of consensus, the article originally included a wide and pretty diverse list of belligerents - your redefinition of the article's scope (if based on the discussion mentioned above) is hardly a "consensus" even on an article with as little traffic as this. Perhaps WP:OWN is relevant here. Out of respect for this, though, I did not add the text to your table but as prose text below. I'm not sure why you are expending so much effort to oppose this pretty uncontroversial (and sourced) addition while so much of the rest of the article fails to cite sources, let alone reliable ones. —Brigade Piron (talk) 18:44, 2 October 2016 (UTC)
          • How would you classify someone who served in a foreign army, ie, an American who enlisted in the British military before 1916? If they served in the British army, they'd be a British veteran, despite their nationality. I say we go with the country of service, rather than nationality. Bkatcher (talk) 19:09, 2 October 2016 (UTC)
            • It's actually the case for at least one veteran on the table; John Babcock of Canada emigrated to the US in the 20s, became an American citizen, and served in the US Army in WWII. Ravenswing 02:17, 3 October 2016 (UTC)

The Hejaz[edit]

Right now, I know of four possible veterans that fought under the Kingdom of Hejaz during WWI and survived into the 90s.

  • Darwish Alabd Khalil (c.1901 - c.1992) - Irregular? Described as being "The last survivor of that army of Bedouin tribes, of dune guerrillas who accompanied Lawrence" in this 1988 Italian magazine. He is quoted as saying "I was fifteen, sixteen years old, some dynamite cartridges to blow up trains and a dream, to free my country from the Turks. The same dream of Emir Fei-sal, the same dream of Lawrence..." in this 1992 Spanish book. It is stated that he was alive and 90 years old at the time it was published.
  • Sheikh Awad al-Fayez Alstam (1890 - 1994) - Irregular. Son of Satam al-Fayez. He belonged to the Bani Sakhr tribe and, according to the first link, fought the Turks (his tribe supported the Arab Army) and later the British in 1936 [19][20][21]. Died at 104 years old [22]
  • Haj Ali Melhem al-Tufayli/علي ملحم الطفيلي (1893/4/7 - Sep 5, 2003) - Arab Army. Father of Subhi al-Tufayli. Born in Brital. This article from 1997, apart from writing he was born in 1897, reads he "lived two world wars and famine in every detail, engaged in the ranks of the "Arab Army» And participated with the rebels in resisting the mandate," meaning he also probably participated in the Great Syrian Revolt. Another 1997 article quotes him saying "We fought the Turks and the French 70 years ago in defense of the dignity of the nation, so why not fight them ... in defense of our personal dignity?", though it says his age is 104. He died in 2003, though his age here is listed as 109. Between the three sources, it appears he was born in either 1893, 4, or 7, or that there is somehow a translation error on Google's part. There was also a fourth, unfortunately unavailable link [23] I had collected years ago which, if I remember correctly, wrote that he was 105 when he died in Baalek, 2003.

If I can find better, more credible links then I will be sure to put them up. Lemunz (talk) 05:57, 24 December 2016 (UTC)

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