Vukoman Arancic

(1850-1915)

 

Vukoman Arancic was born in the village of Laniste, county of Jagodina, on May 10, 1850, (1851, according to a necrologue), in a family of farmers. He died of a spotted fever in Uzice, on February 12, 1915. He was married to Milica, whose maiden name remained unknown. They had two sons, Petar and Branislav, who were officers as well. Both sons died during the World War I. Their third child, daughter Slavka, was married to second lieutenant Marko A. Popovic.

 

He finished six high school grades in Kragujevac. He enrolled at the Military Academy in November 1869 (9th class), and he graduated on September 20, 1874. He was ranked 7th out of 20 cadets. In the period 1880-1882 he served in engineering units in Vienna as a state cadet.
Promotions: second lieutenant, on September 20, 1874; first lieutenant, on August 2, 1876; captain (2nd class), on April 1, 1880; captain (1st class) , on January 1, 1885; major , on April 16, 1887; lieutenant colonel , on November 1, 1892; colonel , on November 1, 1897; general , on November 1, 1913.

Upon his graduation, until 1876, he served as a sergeant in an engineering company, as an orderly officer in the Sumadija Division, and then in the Banjski Corps. In the First Serbain-Turkish War he was appointed adjutant for General Staff activities in the Timok Corps. In the World War II he was the chief of staff of the Jagodina Brigade. While being on this duty, he was the first one to enter Nis on December 29, 1877. After he returned from Vienna, he was appointed commander of the engineering battalion's 2nd company. In November 1882 he was transferred to the position of chief of staff of the engineering regiment. He remained on that duty until January 5, 1884, when he became commander of the 1st engineering battalion's 5th company. On the eve of the Serbian-Bulgarian War he was named acting chief of staff of Drina Division. He was on this duty during the war as well. From that position, in October 1887, he was appointed commander of the 6th Infantry Battalion.

In April of the following year he became acting head of the Foreign Section of the Operational Division in the Main General Staff. During the 1890s he covered several positions in the Central Army Department. He was also the acting head of the Operational Division of the Ministry of Defense, acting chief of the Main General Staff, chief of the General Military Division of the Ministry of Defense and assistant of the chief of staff of the Command of Active Army. In October 1900, he was transferred to the duty of the assistant of the chief of staff of the Main General Staff. During one part of this period, from March 1895 until March of the following year, he served in a troop as commander of the 9th Infantry Regiment. Afterwards, he was appointed commander of the Sumadija Division Area, and since April 1902, of the Timok Division Area. At the same time, in August 1901, he became member of the Superior Military Council. He was retired on July 2, 1903. During the First Balkan War, as a retired colonel, he was commander of the Timok Division Area. He was on that position when the Serbian-Bulgarian conflict started. He created the Timok Army with soldiers of the 3rd call-up. With this army he rejected the Bulgarian attack in Planica, on June 23-24, and then on July 2, he launched an offensive. On that occasion he invaded Kula and Belogradzik, and sieged Vidin. For merits earned in the war front, on November 1, 1913, he was reactivated and promoted to general, and the people of Zajecar, as a sign of gratitude, made him their honorary citizen. During the World War I he was a commander of the Timok Division of the second call-up. Aftre three days of battle, on August 10, 1914, his division took over the city of Sabac.

In September of the same year he was appointed commander of the Uzice Army. On that position, in October and November 1914, he led battles in Senkovic, Paklinik, Tocionik, Babjak and Semec. After the fall of Cacak, on November 12, he was forced to withdraw from Uzice. In the following offensive towards Suvobor and Rudnik, his unit was at the left wing of the First Army. While pursuing the enemy, Aracic's troops entered Uzice on November 29. That's where he caught spotted fever and died soon after.

In the Military Academy Aracic was an honorary and full-time professor. On several occasions: from September 12, 1893 until September 1, 1896, from June 21, 1897 until March 1, 1899 and from March 26, 1900 until august 18, 1901, he gave lectures on General Staff activities with war games. In 1893 and 1901 he was a member of the Academic Council of this institution. From October 1900 until October of the following year he was the editor of the military magazine "Ratnik". In 1898 he was also the editor of the Military Official Gazette. Beside all mentioned duties, Aracic covered many other positions as well. He was president and member of commissions for exams in commissioned and non-commissioned officers schools. In 1895 he was a member of the Military Court of Cassation.

National decorations: Order of the Karadjordje's Star with Swords of the 4th degree; Order of Milos Veliki of the 2nd degree; Order of White Eagle of the 3rd and 5th degree; Order of the Takovo Cross with Swords of the 5th degree; Order of the Takovo Kross of the 2nd and 3rd degree; Silver Medal of Valor; Medal of Military Virtue; Silver Medal for Devoted Service; Memorial for 1876-1878 Wars
Foreign decorations: Russian - Order of Saint Stanislaus with Swords of the Зrd degree; Montenegrin - Order of Danilo of the 3rd degree; French - Order of the Legion of Honour of the 4th degree.

 

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