Anyone who follows this blog knows that I’m from New England and have a particular interest in the history of the 26th Division given it’s designation as the New England “Yankee” Division. I’ve had this photo for a few years and recently decided to reexamine it to hopefully find some extra info on the veteran. Low and behold I was able to discover a treasure trove of info on his service during WWI. A particularly fine pose showing the two wound chevrons and the OS stripes, this shot is one of my favorites from the 26th Division.
Leo Hayden was a member of Company L of the 101st Infantry Regiment of the 26th Division. He is buried in St. Patrick’s Cemetery in Natick, MA.
One mysterious point about the image is the fact that he is wearing a 104th Infantry Regiment collar disc but is listed as being a 1st Sgt. with the 101st Infantry. Is it possible that he was moved to the 104th prior to shipping stateside?