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Maurice Doyle, 1899-1918


Posted By: Emmet County IAGenWeb Coordinator (email)
Date: 1/29/2009 at 21:23:55


Maurice Doyle Suffers Supreme Sacrifice
Dies in France of Wounds Received in Battle

Youngest of Emmet County Volunteers

Only Son of Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Doyle of Estherville
Dreadful Tidings Came Monday Night

The frightfulness of war is becoming more and more manifest to the people of Emmet County every day and the longer the was is prolonged the more frequent will the pangs of sorrow fall upon the families of all communities.

This time the flags are at half mast and Estherville is in mourning over the death of her youngest volunteer, Maurice Doyle, the beloved and only son of Mr. and Mrs. Thos. Doyle of this city.

The dreadful message came at 10:30 Monday night over the telephone from Mason City, saying that "Maurice Doyle died on July 21st [1918] of wounds inflicted while in action." The message had been sent by telegram to Mason City and from there had been telephoned to this city. It was sent in this manner on account of the Western Union telegraph station being closed in Estherville after nine o'clock in the evening. The message was confirmed by a telegram direct from Washington Tuesday morning.

The parents and sisters, the Misses Ellen, Josephine, Catherine and Mary Doyle, are overcome with grief and there is a gloom of sorrow over the entire city.

Maurice Doyle {born March 18, 1899 at Spirit Lake] was not of age when he enlisted in April, 1917, and his parents very reluctantly gave their consent and did not then until they had strongly protested with their son against enlisting.

He went to Fort Logan, Colorado in April, 1917, and was soon after transferred with several other Estherville boys to a camp near San Antonio, Texas. He was in training there but a short time when he was sent overseas with his regiment. He has been in France a little over a year.

He wrote home frequently and from what he said it was known he was on the fighting line but at just what place he did not say, nor is it known here at home today.

The family had not received word from him for some time. The latest dating his letters received was May 21, 1918.

Maurice was the only son in the family of five children, the youngest of the family and the idol of the household. He was a general favorite in the community. He was a good boy and a manly young man. He was well known, having been employed with the H. B. Lawrence clothing store.

Note: All business houses in Estherville were closed for a memorial service which was held on August 17, 1918 at St. Patrick Church in Estherville. Maurice Doyle served in France in World War I with Company C, 16th Infantry, U.S. Army. A letter from the War Department, The Adjutant General's Office, Washington, July 31, 1918 addressed to Mr. Thomas S. Doyle, 1008 E. Robert St., Estherville, Iowa stated "It is with profound regret that I confirm the recent telegram of the Adjutant General, announcing the death of Private Maurice J. Doyle, Company C, 16th Infantry. The information received does not give the place of death or other particulars. The commander has your address and should furnish you full particulars of the sad event. Should this office receive further information you will be advised in detail. It is not the intention of the War Department to return the bodies of our dead to the United States before the end of the war and such removal by individuals is not practicable during this emergency. It is expected, however, that the remains of all American soldiers 'dying abroad' will ultimately be returned to the United States for burial at their former residences at public expense." Maurice J. Doyle was buried in St. Patrick Cemetery at Estherville on July 21, 1921.

The American Legion Post in Estherville honored Maurice J. Doyle by naming the post for him.

Contributed by: Ruth Hackett. Sources: Vindicator and Republican, Estherville, Emmet County, Iowa, July 31, 1918; Estherville Democrat, Estherville, Emmet County, Iowa, August 7, 1918; Estherville Enterprise, Estherville, Emmet County, Iowa, July 31, 1918.


Emmet Obituaries maintained by LaVern Velau.
WebBBS 4.33 Genealogy Modification Package by WebJourneymen

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