Of three men I’ve grown to know. I’ve been wanting to do this post for a long time and decided to share it with you all today. I was going to save it for certain dates, but today seems fitting.
There are three men in my family, that I’m aware of, who fought in the First World War. Their names are George Dawson, James Dawson and Bernard Fitzpatrick.
We’ll start with James. He was born in 1894 in Pennsylvania, USA. He was a bombardier in the Royal Field Artillery and was killed in action on the 22nd of April, 1918. He was 24. James was the younger brother of George and his parents had already lost his younger brother two years earlier. Found in his pocket was this picture:
“From left to right (1915)
Aunt Belle 19. Dad (George) 24. Aunt Lizzie 28. Mom (George’s girlfriend) 19.
These words were on the original.
To Jim with love Lizzie 1915
This was in his pocket when he was killed 1918″
Next is Bernard. He was born in 1882 in Wednesbury. He was already a regular soldier and enlisted in 1914 in the 2nd South Staffs Regiment. He received mentions in newspapers and was awarded the DCM and Russian Cross of St George.
He was killed in action at the Battle of Loos. He was 34.
I also hope to be able to visit him. Bernard also had a brother who was killed in France, 1916.
Then we have George. He was born in 1891 in Pennsylvania, USA.
He was in the 7th South Staffs Regiment from 1915-1917, when he was medically discharged. He served at Gallipoli until the evacuation then he was in France. He was wounded at the Battle of the Somme while a machine gunner.
He had kept on going on and off until they discharged him in 1917 when he was no longer fit to fight, due to the above injuries and his lungs.
He still managed to work after the war and, during the Second World War, worked in a factory.
I hope this post had interested you, or inspired you to find out more about your family’s role in WWI. I’ve grown close to these men I’ve never met, through reading little notes on the back of photos, the newspaper articles or even stories jotted down in the family book. I will always remember them. The candle I light tonight is in their memory and the rest of the soldiers, nurses, factory workers and civilians who were involved in the war.
We will remember them.