Rank:  Lieutenant
Date of Death: 19/09/1918
Age: 21
Regiment/Service: Essex Regiment 1st/6th Bn.
Grave Reference: E.35

Additional Information:

Born in 1897 at South Woodford, son of Swiss National Franz (Sugar Merchant) and Mary Ann Riggenbach. 1902: The family was at “Haslemere” Grove Hill, South Woodford. 1911: A Scholar at Bancroft’s, with his family at Murton House, Higham Road, Woodford Green, which remained his address at death. His Father died on 04-01-18 at Eastbourne. Having enlisted at Woodford Francis was Commissioned from the Royal Fusiliers in 01-15, and sent to the Middle East with 6 Essex.

The Battle of Tel Megiddo against the Turks in Ottoman Syria began on 19-09-18, and subsequently ranged over the Plain of Sharon, Esdralon Plain, Arara in the Judean Hills and beyond. On 01-10-18 Damascus was captured, and on 31-10-18 hostilities ceased.

On 17-09 a diversionary attack by Arab Revolt Forces caused some Turkish formations to be redeployed. The main attack then began at 04.30 on 19-09 with an artillery barrage. The Allied Force quickly broke through the weakened Turkish lines, then progressed further along the coast before encircling a large number of Turkish troops. The attack was successfully concluded “at relatively little cost”, but unfortunately, Francis Riggenbach was killed during the fighting.

In 09-2014 his death plaque and medals were auctioned by Wellington Antiques 36, Church Hill Loughton.

Memorial: Roll of Honour: St Mary’s Church. Bancroft’s School.
Separate Folder: NO.
Principal Sources: Ancestry. Regimental History.
Qualification: Borough Resident.