He was born in New York City on November 7, 1889, the son of Mrs. Marie L. Brown. Mrs. Brown later remarried to a Mr. Thomas Gibson and they moved to Los Angeles, Calif. According to a 1916 Wareham resident directory, Dudley L. Brown was working as an agent at the Adams Express office in Onset. As a single young man of 27, he boarded at 8 Highland Avenue, a private inn approximately where the Onset Fire Station is today. On June 7, 1917, whistles and bells throughout the town announced the beginning of Registration Day. Every able-bodied young man was asked to sign up to join the American troops in their choice of armed services. This was an opportunity to enlist before the upcoming September 5th draft. On that June day, 389 Wareham men enrolled while townspeople cheered them on and presented them with flowers and congratulatory buttons. But Dudley L. Brown was not among them. Brown had already headed for Parris Island, S.C. and had enlisted in the Marines a full week ahead of his Onset and Wareham friends. Brown's military record is documented in the Gold Star Record of Massachusetts and also on the list of Wareham WWI servicemen, provided by the Massachusetts Military Archives in Worcester. Note should be taken to his awards of the Croix de Guerre with palm and an A.E.F. Citation No. 1 for gallantry. Despite the fact that he 'was gassed' in April 1918, he went on to lead the way for his men before the battle of St. Etienne where he was killed on October 9, 1918. Flagstaff Square, in the center of Onset was renamed in honor of Sgt. Brown. According to the records of the United States National Cemeteries, Dudley L. Brown's body was brought home from France and he is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, Section 18, and Site 3505.
From Mass. Military Archives:
BROWN, DUDLEY LEICESTER, (122053) Onset ( Wareham), white, 27 7/12 yrs; enl 30 May
1917; USMC; Co N Parris Isl SC to 14 Aug 1917, 83 Co 6 Regt Quantico VA to 19 Nov 1917, Repl Bn on 6 June 1918, 83 Co; Corp. Sgt; AEF 19 Nov 1917 to death; 1918: WIA (gassed) 13 Apr 1918; KIA 6 Oct 1918.
Entitled to wear the Fourragure
AMERICAN E. F. CITATION. Citation Order No. 1, page 29. "For gallantry in action
near St. Etienne, France, October 9, 1918, while leading a combat patrol." JOHN J. PERSHING, General, U.S.Army.
Second Division Citation. General Order 488, page 113, "Displayed exceptional bravery and coolness in the performance of his duties near St. Etienne, October 9, 1918, and while leading a combat patrol he went ahead and alone to recon in order to make it safe for the remainder of the patrol to advance. This gallant soldier was killed in the performance of this important duty."
Awarded French Croix de Guerre with Palm, under Order No. 11768 "D", dated November 20, 1918. Gen Hdqts. French Armies of the North and Northeast, with the following citations "On October 9, 1918, near St. Etienne, he displayed the finest coolness and great courage in accomplishing his duty. In charge of a patrol he advances alone to ascertain if his men could advance without danger. Was Killed."