Edward B. Cole

Ranked #14 on the list Best Military Person of All Time

Based on 5 votes

About Edward B. Cole

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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 born in on September 23, 1879 in Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard University in 1902, where he was a member of the Owl Club. 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.

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