Thursday, August 23, 2018

Corp. Willie Shankle Killed in Fighting Around Chateau-Thierry, 1918

“Supreme Sacrifice,” from the Hickory Daily Record, Aug. 22, 1918. Photo from

Another Richmond County Lad Reported Dead on the Battlefields of France—Willie W. Shankle

It is reported, on apparently good authority, that Corporal Willie W. Shankle was killed in battle in France July 20th. There has been no official notification or confirmation of his death, the news coming to his sister, Mrs. Pearl Tyson, at Norwood, in a letter from Corporal Jacob Crowell Shankle.

Crowell Shankle’s letter was dated July 26th, and in it he stated that his cousin, Willie was killed as they side by side were advancing in battle. Both belonged to Co. L, 16th infantry. It is presumed the death occurred in the fighting around Chateau-Thierry.

Willie Shankle was a manly fellow, just 21 last Sept. 26th. He was six feet tall, weighed 200 pounds and looked every inch a soldier. That he fell with his face to the enemy was a foregone conclusion with those who knew Willie Shankle.

His mother, Mrs. Sallie Shankle, has made her home in Rockingham with her daughter, Mrs. Joe A. Porter, for many years. In April, 1917, young Shankle, while working at Badin, visited his mother here, and while returning to Badin struck up with a bunch of fellows who were on their way to Greensboro to enlist. He forthwith joined them, volunteered at Greensboro, was then sent to Fort Thomas Kentucky, later to San Antonio, Texas, then in June, 1917, to France, being among the first to go across. He has written many letter home to his relative, in all of which he evidenced the same cheerfulness that made him popular with his mates while a student at Rockingham school.

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