And they don’t even try to hide it.
One minute before the guns fell silent on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, World War I took its last American victim.
Henry Gunther was hit by German machine gun fire at 10:59 a.m. in the northeastern French town of Chaumont-devant-Damvillers in a final-minute clash with German troops.
A monument honoring the 23-year-old from Baltimore, Maryland, was erected in Chaumont-devant-Damvillers before Tuesday’s 90th anniversary of the Nov. 11, 1918, armistice that ended the bloody four-year conflict.
The town’s mayor, Pierre Lenhard, said Gunther had largely been forgotten by French historians.
“I found the reference (to Gunther) when I was looking through the archives,” said Lenhard, himself a historian. “This soldier isn’t mentioned in any French documents.”