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He was only eight years old: The youngest Serbian soldier, he crossed Albania and became a hero


This is the story of a boy whose entire family was killed and who joined the army at the age of eight, crossed Albania, and became the youngest sub-sergeant in the history of the Serbian army …

Momčilo Gavrić was born on May 1, 1906, in Trbušnica near Loznica. He was born as the eighth child of mother Jelena and father Alimpij Gavrić. His tragedy begins when he was only eight years old.

At the beginning of August 1914, Austro-Hungarian soldiers from the Croatian Home Guard 42nd Division, which was known under the infamous nickname “Devil’s Division”, killed Momčilo Gavrić’s father, mother, grandmother, four brothers and three sisters. They set fire to his house.

Due to a combination of incredible circumstances and incredible luck, little Momcilo survived thanks to his father, who sent him to find a carriage with his uncle.

The boy was left alone, without anyone in the world and without anything. Completely alone.

In the meantime, he encountered the Sixth Artillery Regiment of the Drina Division, which was commanded by Stevan Tucović, Dimitrij Tucović’s brother. Little Momčilo told the army what the enemy soldiers had done to his family, he was accepted into the ranks of the regiment and began to write an incredible life and historical story.

Historical data show that Major Stevan Tucović, hearing the story of little Gavrić, ordered the soldiers to let Momčilo Gavrić shoot from a cannon three times every day, in order to avenge the family in that way.

He will remain known in history as a sub-sergeant of the Sixth Artillery Regiment of the Drina Division, as well as the youngest non-commissioned officer in the world during the First World War.

Also, Duke Živojin Mišić promoted Momčilo Gavrić to the rank of sub-sergeant in 1916, when Momčilo was 10 years old in Kajmakćalan, and before that, after the Battle of Cer, he acquired the rank of corporal at the age of eight.

Momčilo Gavrić passed away on April 28, 1993.




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