Dokter Heinrich

Heinrich Dokter was born on January 23rd, 1884. In August 1914, Heinrich was conscripted into the German army and grouped with a battalion of Jägers, a light infantry unit. The battalion suffered from a shortage in clothes and weapons.  After a short training period, Dokter was made to join the 4th reserve army in Belgium in their battle against the British professional army. He was dangerously wounded in an Allied offensive on December 16th, 1914. His injuries too serious to be treated in on…

De Winde Juul

De Winde Juul
De Winde Juul

Born in Merchtem on May 13th, 1893, Juul De Winde was conscripted into the Belgian army on August 16th, 1913, where he joined the ranks of the 1st Carabinier Regiment. Juul had a very successful career in the army. By the time the war started, Juul was 21 years old and held the rank of sergeant. During the war, Juul was promoted to lieutenant. He was well liked by his troops, whom he continuously inspired and motivated with quotes derived from the popular catholic student chant "De Blauwvoet”…

Denys Margaretha

Margaretha Denys was born in Roeselare on June 30th, 1871. She was the daughter of the haberdasher on the Grand Place in Roeselare. Margaretha was raised in a traditional Christian family and attended school at Roeselare, Heule and Doornik.  In 1984, Margaretha married Karel Coussement, a local dyer. Margaretha did not have an easy life. Just a few years into the marriage, her husband died, after which she moved to Eernegem, a hamlet of Ichtegem. In 1904 and 1906, she lost 2 of her children. …

Dix Otto

Dix Otto
Dix Otto

Otto Dix (1891-1969) was a German painter. Between 1910 and 1933, he painted works that tied in with the dominant artistic movements of the period: realism, dadaism and expressionism. When the war started in August 1914, Otto joined the German army voluntarily. In the four years that followed, Otto developed a deep-rooted aversion to the violence of war, which is reflected in many of his post wartime paintings. During the war, Otto served on the Flemish front twice. During his time there, he pr…

Debusschere Richard

Born in Lichtervelde, Richard Debusschere spent his childhood in the parental home on the dead-end part Bollestraat, west of the railroad. In 1908, Richard married a girl from Torhout and moved there.  In the summer of 1915, as a number of German soldiers were quartered in their home, the young family got into trouble when one of the German soldiers accused Richard’s wife of stealing food. The allegations were never properly investigated, but Richard took the fall for his wife’s supposed m…

Deroo Marie

The famous World War I spy Martha Knockaert mentioned a Lucelle Deldonck in her autobiographical novel ‘I Was a Spy’. Lucelle Deldonck was the code name of Martha's aunt, Marie Deroo.  When the war broke out, Marie Deroo was a wheat merchant and mother of five. The family lived in Westrozebeke. From October 21st until October 23rd, 1914, mayor Mahieu of Roeselare, who had been taken prisoner, was sent to Westrozebeke by the Germans to supervise  …

Dezegher Sylvère

Dezegher Sylvère
Dezegher Sylvère

Sylvère Dezegher was born on April 14th, 1902. When the war broke out, he was living in Dadizele with his parents and 4 siblings. In October 1917, the family was forced to leave Dadizele and settled in Herne, a village in Flanders' Pajottenland. They returned to Dadizele after the war. During World War I, Sylvère kept a journal of his life in occupied Dadizele and as a refugee in Herne. Sylvère became a flax merchant and started working at “Het Fabriekske”, a mill in Ledegem. He later ma…