Ernest Denning Cavenaugh enlisted in the Regular Army soon after the US joined WWI. He lived in Wilmington, NC, many years. He is included in the list of Brunswick County WWI veterans because while being transported to France in 1918, he reported his next of kin as his father with an address of Southport.
One of Ernest’s brothers, Charles Irving Cavenaugh, served in WWI and WWII, achieving the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, according to his Findagrave entry.
NC WWI Service Card
Ernest Denning Cavenaugh was born in Newberry, SC. His parents were born in NC and by the time of the 1910 US Census, they had moved their family to Wilmington, NC, where they remained until their deaths.
Newspaper stories from the time indicate Ernest was admired for his piano playing.
Ernest was a freshman in Trinity College (now Duke University) in 1916-1917. But on June 6, 1917, two months after the US entered WWI, Ernest left college and enlisted in the Regular Army in Greensboro, NC. He served in the Surgeon’s Office of the 30th “Old Hickory” Division, serving overseas from May 11, 1918, until September 7, 1919. The US Army Transport Passenger List shows he was scheduled to return on March 17, 1919, with the HQ Detachment but was transferred to the Medical Detachment and returned at the later date. He also had reached the rank of Sergeant First Class earlier that year.
This photograph was found on page 48 in the 1921 Trinity College yearbook when Ernest was a senior, and was copied into his Findagrave entry.
According to the obituary below, Ernest Denning Cavenaugh passed away on October 4, 1969 in Boston. The Social Security Death Index shows October 15, 1969, which is obviously incorrect, given the obituary was published on October 6.
Ernest D. Cavenaugh
Services for Ernest D. Cavenaugh of 3082 Argonne Drive NW will be Tuesday in Wilmington, N.C. Born in Wilmington, Mr. Cavenaugh was a rating specialist for the Veterans Administration. He was graduated from Duke University and Georgetown University Law School. He died Saturday in Boston. Survivors include three sisters and two brothers.
The Atlanta Constitution, 6 October 1969, p. 30
He was laid to rest in Oakdale Cemetery in Wilmington. Along with a family headstone, this military flat marker is located at his grave site. The date of death displayed is October 5, 1969.
To view this or an earlier profile or snapshot at any time, click on the veteran’s name on the WWI Brunswick County Veteran list, which is also accessible by the blue button on the top right of the webpage.
If you would like to help us honor Ernest Denning Cavenaugh or another Brunswick County WWI veteran, please use the following links:
Click here for the announcement:
Announcement: Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
Click here for directions to donate and honor a veteran:
How to Honor a Brunswick County World War I Veteran
You must be logged in to post a comment.