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Batten, John

Batten, John

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Date of Birth: 1897
Died On: 24-Aug-1918
Street Address: 111 Railroad Ave
Service Number: 1206730
Branch of Service: U.S. Army WW I - Company B, 106th Infantry Regiment, 27th Infantry Division

Veteran Code: WWI-307

BIOGRAPHY Extended Information
John Batten

John was born in Port Chester NY in February 1897, son of Andrew H. and Emily Batten. He had two brothers Thomas and Andrew and two sisters Mary and Emily. His father and mother were both born in England. His father was a well known builder in busines with his brother William H Batten.

While he was still a baby his family moved to Rye and it was there he grew up. He was a ruddy cheeked, fair haired youngster whom every one liked. He sang in the choir of Christ's Church from the ftme he was eight years old until the time he left Rye to live with his sister in Flatbush, LI .

John attended Rye public schools was a member of The Young Mens Club and later the YMCA. In Rye his family lived at 111 Rail Road Ave (Theodore Fremd).

John Batten enlisted in the National Guard Co B of the 23rd Regiment. When the national guard was federalized his regiment became the 106th Infantry Regiment, 27th Infantry Division.

He served seven months on the Mexican border then went with his regiment to France. John was a Sergeant in Company B of the 106th Infantry when he was killed in action on 24-Aug-1918 in an attempt to remove the Germans from the Dickebusch -Scherpenberg area.

Details of Sgt. John Batten's death were provided to his family by his friend Sgt. Henry Helfrich, published in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle November 2nd, 1918.

"We were occupying the frontline trenches and one evening a wiring party was sent out to straighten out and inspect the wire in front of our trenches - John' was in charge of the detail and had hardly left the trench when the Germans opened up with a volley of machine-gun fire. John was hit with I understand eight bullets and died as he was being rushed to the first aid post. He never gained consciousness and never knew what had struck him."

‘'Under the circumstances it was very difficult to have John taken out of the trenches but we managed to get his body to the Abeele Cemetery at a town named Abeele France, and he was given a formal military burial under the Stars and Stripes for which he so valiantly fought “

On September 3rd 1918 the Germans withdrew from the area, marking the successful completion of the Ypres-Lys Offensive.

Sadly, two days after John's death his first cousin Charles A. Batten, also from Rye, would be killed in the same area while serving with The Royal Highlanders of Canada.

World War One History 106th Infantry Regiment

The 106th Infantry Regiment, formerly the 23rd New York Infantry Regiment was a New York State National Guard Regiment that saw action in the Civil War, the Mexican Border dispute of 1916 and World War I.

For service in WWI, the 23rd New York Infantry officially became the 106th Infantry and was strengthened by reinforcements drawn from the 14th Infantry. At the commencement of active fighting, the 106th had a total effective strength of 3,003 officers and men. The 106th was attached to the 53rd Brigade, along with the 105th Infantry Regiment.

The 106th shipped to Europe in May of 1918 and was initially placed in the East Poperinghe Line with the rest of the 27th Division. On July 25th 1918 the 27th division was slowly rotated into the front line in relief of the British 6th Division. On August 31st 1918, operations of the Ypres-Lys Offensive began in an attempt to remove the Germans from the Dickebusch/Scherpenberg area. The 106th participated in the reconnaissance that opened the offensive. On September 3rd 1918 the Germans withdrew from the area, marking the successful completion of the Ypres-Lys Offensive.

From September 24th to October 21st 1918 the 106th participated with the rest of the 27th Division in the Somme Offensive, which was a successful attempt to break the German’s Hindenburg defensive line. On October 21st 1918 the entire division was relieved. By March 19th 1919 the division had returned in full to the states where it was quickly mustered out.

During its service in World War I, the 106th sustained 1,955 casualties including 1,496 wounded, 376 killed, and 83 who later died of their wounds.

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