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George Lawrence Price Information

George Lawrence Price

Place of birth: Falmouth, Nova Scotia
Place of death: Ville-sur-Haine, Belgium
Resting place: St Symphorien Military Cemetery, Mons, Belgium (5025′56″N 40′38″E / 50.43222N 4.01056E / 50.43222; 4.01056Coordinates: 5025′56″N 40′38″E / 50.43222N 4.01056E / 50.43222; 4.01056)
Allegiance: Canada / British Empire
Service/branch: Canadian Corps (Army)
Years of service: 1917-1918
Rank: Private
Unit: 28th 'Northwest' Battalion Canadian Infantry (Saskatchewan Regiment) aka. 'the Nor'westers'
Battles/wars: Amiens, Cambrai, & the 'Pursuit to Mons'

Private George Lawrence Price (Regimental Number: 256265) (December 15, 1892 - November 11, 1918) was a Canadian soldier. He is traditionally recognized as the last soldier of the British Empire to be killed during the First World War.

Early life

He was born in Falmouth, Nova Scotia, on December 15, 1892, and raised on Church Street in what is now Port Williams, Nova Scotia. He lived in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, when he was conscripted on October 15, 1917. He served with "A" Company of the 28th Battalion, Canadian Expeditionary Force.

November 11, 1918

On November 11, Pte Price was part of an advance to take the small village of Havr. After a crossing of the Canal du Centre into the town of Ville-sur-Haine under German machine gun fire, Price and his patrol moved toward a row of houses intent on pursuing the machine gunner who had harassed their crossing of the canal. The patrol had entered the house from which they had thought the shooting had come, but found the Germans had exited through the back door as they entered the front. They then pursued into the house next door and again found it empty. George Price was fatally shot in the region of his heart by a German sniper as he stepped out of the house into the street, against contrary advice from a house occupant, at 10:58 a.m., November 11, 1918. He died just 2 minutes before the armistice ceasefire, that ended the war, came into effect at 11 a.m.

Memorials

Price is buried in the St Symphorien military cemetery, just southeast of Mons. Coincidentally, this is also the final resting place of John Parr and George Edwin Ellison, respectively the first and last British soldiers killed during the Great War.

In 1968, on the 50th anniversary of his death and the armistice surviving members of his company traveled to Ville-sur-Haine and a memorial plaque was placed onto a wall of a house near the location of his death. The inscription, in English and then in French, reads in English:

To the memory of 256265 Private George Lawrence Price, 28th North West Battalion, 6th Canadian Infantry Brigade, 2nd Canadian Division, killed in action near this spot at 10.58 hours, November 11th, 1918, the last Canadian soldier to die on the Western Front in the First World War. Erected by his comrades, November 11th, 1968.

To the memory of 256265 Private George Lawrence Price, 28th North West Battalion, 6th Canadian Infantry Brigade, 2nd Canadian Division, killed in action near this spot at 10.58 hours, November 11th, 1918, the last Canadian soldier to die on the Western Front in the First World War. Erected by his comrades, November 11th, 1968.

The house has since been torn down, but the plaque has been placed on a brick and stone monument near the site where the house originally stood, and thus still near the place where he fell.

In 1991, the town of Ville-sur-Haine erected a new footbridge across the adjacent canal. A plebiscite was held and on 11 November the bridge was officially named the George Price Footbridge (Passerelle George Price).

Augustin Trbuchon, last French soldier killed in World War I, 10:45 a.m. November 11, 1918

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Source: WikiPedia

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