This month, I have continued to honour the 104 men connected to my family who died in the two world wars and the 2nd Boer War. I am remembering them all on Twitter on the anniversaries of their deaths. The second group – including six who died in the two world wars and my great-great grandfather, who had a record 30 grandsons serving in the Great War – were:
Lance-corporal George Henry Stevens was killed in the Battle of Arras in France on May 3, 1917. His body was never found. George, who served in the 4th Battalion of the Royal Fusiliers, is remembered on the Arras Memorial.
Pte George Reuben Martin Fisher was 20 when he died in Tunisia – in the North African Campaign – on May 4, 1943. George, of the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Hampshire Regiment, took part in a heroic four-day defence of Tebourba, near Tunis, in November 1942.
John Roberts, my great-great grandfather, who had a record 30 grandsons serving in the Great War, died on May 21, 1919, aged 90. Seven of his grandsons never made it home. A memorial cross in John’s honour stands in the churchyard in Witheridge, Devon.
Sydney James Rice (1911-1940), a sergeant in the 55 (Devon) Light Anti-Aircraft Regiment of the Royal Artillery, lost his life in the Battle of Narvik – against invading German forces – in Norway on May 24, 1940. He was 29.
William Henry Kingdom (1890-1916), who was married with two children, died from heart disease in Mesopotamia on May 27, 1916, aged 26. A corporal in the 1/4th Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment, he is remembered on the Basra Memorial.
John ‘Jack’ Roberts (1894-1915) died of wounds – sustained in or after the Battle of Aubers Ridge – on May 30, 1915, two days before his 21st birthday. Jack, a private in the 2nd Battalion of the Devonshire Regiment, was buried at Boulogne Eastern Cemetery.
Ordinary seaman David Stephen Penny (1897-1916) was one of more than 1,000 officers and men who died in the British battlecruiser HMS Invincible when she was blown up in the Battle of Jutland on May 31, 1916. He is remembered on Portsmouth Naval Memorial.
The bow and stern of HMS Invincible standing upright on the bed of the North Sea after being sunk during the Battle of Jutland. Public Domain image (via Wikimedia Commons).