Cavell, Edith. (1865, England - 1915, Belgium).
A trained English nurse, appointed in 1907 first matron of the Berkendael
Institute of Brussels, where she helped improve nursing standards. In 1914,
when the Germans occupied Belgium, she became associated with an underground
group helping British, French and Belgian soldiers flee to Holland. Escape
included shelter at the Berkendael Institute, now a Red Cross hospital.
Men were supplied with money and guides. Some 200 men had benefited from
this help when Cavell and some of her collaborators were arrested. Cavell
confessed and at her court-martial of October 7-9, 1915, she was sentenced
to death, although for reasons which did not include espionage. Despite
diplomatic efforts by neutral countries to obtain a reprieve, Cavell was
executed, becoming a martyr in the process, a widely-publicized example
of German atrocities in Belgium. (See: A.A. Hoechling, Edith Cavell 1958.)