Daves Rossell

No. 5639 Class of April, 1917. Captain Rossell was returning from a reconnaissance, prior to leading his company in an attack, when without warning a shell burst just above, mortally wounding him, October 13, 1918, in France north of Verdun. Aged 23 years.

Davies Russell

Daves Rossell, New Brighton, New York, was born in New Berne, North Carolina, February 26, 1896. He was the youngest son of Brigadier-General W. T. Rossell, former chief of the U. S. Army En- gineers. His mother was a daughter of John W. Ellis, a former governor of North Carolina.

He was an appointee at large, 1914, to the U. S. Military Academy, West Point, New York, and passed one in the competitive examination for cadetship. His record at West Point was excellent. He was a good student and a good comrade; and such was the confidence of his fellow-students in his sound judgment that they dubbed him, in pleasantry, “Savvy”.
He was, while a cadet, Acting Sergeant, Sergeant, Quartermaster Sergeant, expert rifleman, outdoor meet. (2)

War having been declared with Germany, his class was graduated 1917, in advance of the regular time, because of the need of trained officers for the army. In his write-up in the Howitzer is found a clause, quite indicative of his character. Referring to some contested point, it says:
“Beware: if you are in the wrong there’ll be a scrap, and peace without victory is not in this man’s code.”

In 1918, after efficient work in training stations, he was sent to France as Captain in the 15th Machine Gun Battalion, 5th Division, A. E. F.

On October 13th, 1918, Captain Daves Rossell, with a party of officers and men, was returning from a reconnaissance, prior to leading his company in an attack decided upon for October 14th. They were on the road north of Verdun. Without warning a shell burst just above Captain Rossell, mortally wounding him. A classmate, Major E. W. Leonard, gave him first aid, and subsequently had him carried to the first aid station about five hundred yards distant. He thanked the men for carrying him and was cheerful and smiling. He said to the Sergeant: “Sergeant, do you think I shall ever see my wife and child again?” He was rushed in an ambulance from the first aid station to the hospital at Bethin court where he died shortly after arriving. There he is buried on the hillside in a cemetery where there are about thirty or forty other graves.

Major “Edward William Leonard”, who at the risk of his own life, had stopped to give his friend first aid, was killed almost instantly in the attack made the following morning.

Colonel Leonard writes of these two:
“They were classmates at West Point and they are classmates in heaven. Men like Savvy and Edward William Leonard” die.”

Colonel Leonard goes on to say:
“I was with Savvy at Frapelle and the St. Mihiel drive, in every kind of vicissitude, hardship and danger, and no braver man ever lived. He had a wonderful Company and they all worshipped him. His life and death were a glorious example of the spirit of West Point. Duty, Honor, Country are emblazoned on-his life, and though his body is gone, his spirit, his soul, will live forever. To those of us who knew him, particularly in the days of battle, he can never die.”

Major William M. Grimes, 15th Machine Gun Battalion, 5th Division, A. E. F., writes of him:
“He was one of the finest, truest, bravest men I have ever known. At Frapelle his courage and devotion to duty, under very trying circumstances, was superb. His loss, not only to us in the battalion, but to his country, is deeply felt by all who knew him. He had been cited in orders on two different occasions for his sterling and brilliant leadership. His Company worshipped him and he was one of the most highly esteemed men of the battalion.”
Captain Daves Rossell was cited at Frapelle and also at St. Mihiel. One citation ran thus:
“Captain Daves Rossell, 15th Machine Gun Battalion, with great courage and coolness occupied conquered ground from which he con- trolled his guns, thus by his personal bravery setting a splendid example for his entire command.”never die.”

Colonel Leonard goes on to say:
“I was with Savvy at Frapelle and the St. Mihiel drive, in every kind of vicissitude, hardship and danger, and no braver man ever lived. He had a wonderful Company and they all worshipped him. His life and death were a glorious example of the spirit of West Point. Duty, Honor, Country are emblazoned on-his life, and though his body is gone, his spirit, his soul, will live forever. To those of us who knew him, particularly in the days of battle, he can never die.”

Major William M. Grimes, 15th Machine Gun Battalion, 5th Division, A. E. F., writes of him:
“He was one of the finest, truest, bravest men I have ever known. At Frapelle his courage and devotion to duty, under very trying circumstances, was superb. His loss, not only to us in the battalion, but to his country, is deeply felt by all who knew him. He had been cited in orders on two different occasions for his sterling and brilliant leadership. His Company worshipped him and he was one of the most highly esteemed men of the battalion.”

Captain Daves Rossell was cited at Frapelle and also at St. Mihiel. One citation ran thus:
“Captain Daves Rossell, 15th Machine Gun Battalion, with great courage and coolness occupied conquered ground from which he controlled his guns, thus by his personal bravery setting a splendid example for his entire command.”

NY Times
http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F30D1EF83B55157A93C5AB178AD95F4C8185F9

BG William Trent Russell is the Father of Daves
http://www.houseofnames.com/rossell-coat-of-arms

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