Monday, July 17, 2017

Remembering Joseph Hebert - U.S. Navy Lost at Sea

Fireman Joseph Hebert serving on the U.S.S. Preston was lost overboard on June 15, 1917. The official U.S. Navy report (U.S. Navy Casualties Book - Drownings 1885-1939) is below:

"June 15, 1917

U.S.S. Preston

At about 8:40 a.m. while engaged in striking down coal on the decks to the bunkers of this vessel, the following men were washed overboard and drowned:
HEBERT, Joseph                                Fireman 2 class
WILLIAMS, Lewis Arthur                    Fireman 3 class

2 enlisted men"

Joseph Hebert was married to Blanche (St. Amand) living at 72 East Meadow Road in Lowell. They had a daughter Doris born in 1916 and a son Joseph born in 1918 after the sailor's death. In July of 1933, Mrs. Blanche Hebert made the journey overseas as part of the Gold Star Mother's Pilgrimage. She sailed out of New York on the USS President Harding. Mrs. Joseph Hebert died on May 18, 1977 leaving her two children, Joseph Hebert & Doris Martin and five grandchildren.

Please remember Joseph Hebert, his family and the sacrifice they all made.



Saturday, July 1, 2017

Remembering Pvt. George W. Gravelle - Massachusetts Old 9th - Co. M

The Massachusetts National Guard Old 9th Regiment Company M was sent to Newburyport to guard the bridges on May 1st, 1917. They guarded Newburyport's bridges until July 1st when they were sent to Camp McGinnis in Framingham for training.

On July 1st, Pvt George W. Gravelle fell off a train in Newburyport and was killed. He was nineteen years old. He never made it to Framingham never mind France. Instead his body was returned to Lowell for his funeral.

He was born in Lowell on September 8, 1898 the youngest child of Charles and Lucy (Chabot) Gravelle. He was survived by five brothers, Joseph, Alfred, John, Arthur and William and three sisters, Rose Parks, Mabelle Whalley and Dorothy Welch. His mother died in 1914 and his father died in 1918. We worked as an apprentice iron moulder.

A military funeral took place at St. Jean Baptiste with Company M forming the honor guard. Burial was in St. Joseph's Cemetery in Chelmsford.

Please remember Pvt George Gravelle and his family's sacrifice.