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The grave location of Lieutenant Edward M. McKey is located in the far right vestibule of the memorial (Sacrario Militare di Fagarè) on the right hand-side about half way up the wall. 

Isolated Burial

The memorial is a gravestone made from marble inscribed with his name and rank.


The memorial is located with the Military Memorial of Fagarè where over 10,000 Italian soldiers (5,191 Known and 5,350 unknown) are buried.  The soldiers buried here died in the two Battles of the Piave River – “The Sacred Piave” in 1917/18: The First and the Second (the second also known as the Battle of the Solstice). The memorial location itself represented the farthest advance west across the Piave by the Austro-German attack precipitated at the Battle of Caporetto in October 1917.  In addition to the burial sites, the military memorial houses a small museum and some famous original graffiti to include the line: “Meglio di vivere un giorno da leone che cento anni di pecora”- “Its better to live one day as a lion, than a hundred years as a sheep”


Lieutenant Edward McKey served in the American Red Cross and is the only American buried in an Italian military cemetery from World War 1.  Unable to join the US military due to health reasons, McKey served in the American Red Cross. He first served in France, where he received the French War Cross, and later in Italy with the as an Ambulance driver and as a mobile canteen operator.  He was a good friend of Ernest Hemingway who penned a poem to McKey after his death – a inscribed bronze of the poem is also located with the military memorial (See Hemingway Poem to McKey Bronze on the website).  McKey was the first American Red Cross causality in Italy when on the first day of the “Battle of the Solstice” (Second Battle of the Piave) on June 15, 1918 he was killed by artillery while operating a forward canteen near Fossalta di Piave.  The Italian Government awarded McKey the Medaglia d’argento al valore military (Silver Medal for Military Valor) for his service.

Monument Text:

The text on the Grave is written in Italian. It reads:


Symbol of a cross








Translation in English:






SILVER MEDAL (Which is the Italian Silver Medal for Valor)




Ernest M. Hemingway

Edward M. McKey


American Red Cross

American Red Cross Ambulance Service




Second Battle of the Piave River (Battle of the Solstice)

Other images :