ROTD AUG 15 LARGE

 

The Western Front Association rembers soldiers who served and died, from the Allies and Central Powers, during the First World War.

 

There will usually be a picture, though not always. There is a short personal biography: when and where they were born and what they did before the war, followed by their enlistment, training, and service.

 

All WW1 forces, all sides, on all fronts, east to west remembered as individual soldiers, nurses, labourers and others on the home front, their lives, service, their loss, burial and commemoration. 

 

Some can be more detailed than others. Included will be their final action or cause of death and their final resting place. 

 

Research by David O'Mara.

 

Readers are invited to add their comments and to submit ideas for people to feature.

16 March 1917 Cpl John Windram629127 Cpl John Windram, 47th Bn CEF (British Columbia Regt)

Born at Eyemouth, Berwickshire on 6 March 1884, John had been employed as a fisherman in Eyemouth before emigrating to Frasers Mills in British Columbia, Canada in 1912. At the time of his enlistment, he was employed as a millwright.

He enlisted into the CEF at Vernon, BC on 18 August 1915 and arrived on the Western Front during the latter half of 1916.

A participant in the final stages of the Battle of the Somme and the Battle of the Ancre, John was posted as 'wounded and missing' during a large scale trench raid on Vimy Ridge near Souchez on 16 March 1917.

His body never having been recovered, John is now commemorated on the Vimy Memorial.

16 March 1917 killed in action

Research by David O'Mara

15 March 1917 Pte Ellis Sutcliffe18508 Pte Ellis Sutcliffe, 6th Bn Loyal North Lancashire Regt.

From Heptonstall, Yorkshire, Ellis was employed as a weaver before the war. He enlisted into the army upon the outbreak of war and was serving with the 1st Battalion Loyal North Lancs in France and Flanders from 27 April 1915.

Wounded at Neuve Chapelle in May 1915, he returned home for recuperation before being sent to Gallipoli where he was hospitalised (in Cairo) with bad feet. Upon this second recovery, he was sent to Mesopotamia. Ellis was wounded in action (gun shot) near Basra and died of his injuries on 15 March 1917. He is commemorated on the Basra Memorial, Iraq.

15 March 1917 died of his injuries.

  

Research by David O'Mara

13 March 1918 Lt Ronald Baines BrookesLt Ronald Baines Brookes, 55 Sqdn 

 

Born at Ingleton, Yorkshire on 19 November 1896, Ronald had emigrated to Canada prior to the war where he was employed as a salesman in Toronto.

He enlisted into the Canadian Army Medical Corps at Toronto on 10 November 1914 and, as a Private soldier numbered 1572, served on the Western Front from mid 1915 with the 5th Canadian Field Ambulance.

Offered a commission in 1917, Ronald joined the RFC as a 2nd Lieutenant and served with 55 Squadron taking part in day-bombing sorties.

Returning from a mission on 13 March 1918, whilst being harassed by German fighters, Ronald's aircraft was seen to go down (under control) behind enemy lines.

Posted as missing, it was for hoped for some time that he might have been a prisoner of war due to the controlled way in which his plane was seen to go down, however, it would appear that Ronald had died upon the impact of his plane hitting the ground.

He is buried in Neuf-Brisach Communal Cemetery Extension, Haut-Rhin, France.

 

13 March 1918 killed in action

Research by David O'Mara

 Photograph of 2nd Lieut James Smyth RFC
 2nd Lieut James Smyth

 

2nd Lieut. James Smyth, 2 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps

 

Born in Ballymacarrett, Belfast in 1889, James moved with his family to England while he was a child.

Living at Plumstead, London, he was employed as a printer’s engineer before getting married and gaining employment with the Borough Engineering Company.

Although originally dissuaded from enlisting due to his occupation, James eventually joined the Royal Flying Corps and was commissioned on 1 August 1916.

After training as a pilot, he was sent to France to join 2 Squadron with whom he remained for the remainder of his career.

Whilst engaged on a photographic recconnaissance mission, James’ B.E.2d –serial number 6232 was attacked by a Halberstadt D.II of Jasta II piloted by Manfred von Richtofen. James's observer was 2nd Lt. Edward Byrne.

It was around mid-day on 11 March 1917.

Crashing south of La Folie Wood on Vimy Ridge, both men were killed instantly upon impact.

Richtofen’s 26th victory.

James Smyth and Edward Byrne are buried in Cabaret Rouge Military Cemetery, Souchez.

 

11 March 1917 killed in action.

 

 

Research by David O'Mara.

 

 

REFERENCES:

Bond of Sacrifice – First World War Portraits Collection - Imperial War Museum ( www. iwm.org.uk )

Ancestry.com. British Army WWI Medal Rolls Index Cards, 1914-1920 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2008. Original data: Army Medal Office.

WWI Medal Index Cards. In the care of The Western Front Association.

The National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; WWI Service Medal and Award Rolls; Class: WO 329

Census Returns of England and Wales, 1911. Kew, Surrey, England: The National Archives of the UK (TNA), 1911.

The Monthly Army List for November 1916 - War Office 1916

Under the Guns of the Red Baron – Franks,Giblin & McRery Pub: London 1998

Commonwealth War Graves Commission (www.cwgc.org )

Officers Died in the Great War – HMSO 1921

14 March 1917 Pte Willie Cook4258 Pte Willie Cook, 2/6th Bn Duke of Wellington's (W Riding) Regiment.

Born in Padiham, Lancashire in 1881, Willie later resided in Burnley (Campbell Street) and then in Earby (White Lion Street). Willie was a weaver at Shuttleworth and Co's Victoria shed in Earby prior to enlistment. Enlisting in late 1915 into the 2/6th Duke of Wellington's, he served in France from October 1916 but he was struck down with severe frostbite in March 1917. Evacuated to a coastal hospital at Wimereux, Willie died on 14 March 1917. He is buried in Wimereux Communal Cemetery.

14 March 1917 killed on this day.

Research by David O'Mara

10 March 1916 Sdt Jules Pierre Caboux1936 Sdt Jules Pierre Caboux, 98e RI.

Resident at 11, Rue Lamure, Roanne at the time of his enlistment in August 1914. Jules was born at Lagnesle, Loire on 20 February 1888. After seeing service on the Oise and the Somme fronts throughout 1915, his regiment moved to take part in the Verdun battle in the first week of March 1916. Jules was killed in action on the Mort-Homme hill on 10 March 1916; he has no known grave.

10 March 1916

Research by David O'Mara

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