Today, I watched the ceremony at the Cenotaph in London. I remembered my dad who went to war on a horse. He was at the Second Battle of Ypres, and then wounded in 1916 by a German shell during the Battle of the Somme.
Here are some notes from my research into his war records:
Charles William Nicholson
Drawn from WWI soldiers records at Kew Record Office
(Britain declares war on Germany 4.8.1914)
Volunteered at Newcastle 22.8.1914. and requested service with Durham Light Infantry but placed with Royal Field Artillery.
Enlisted as William Nicholson, shipyard rivetter, aged 21 yrs 3 months.
1 Depot RFA, attested and posted Gunner from 22.8.14.
169 Battery. Royal Field Artillery posted Gunner. 12.9.14
72 Brigade RFA posted Driver 1.10.14.
53 Bde RFA Army Corps, posted Driver 9.3.15
To duty British Expeditionary Force 26.6.15 70 Brigade, posted Driver 27.6. 1915,
Embarked Southampton 7.7.15 for France.
Disembarked Le Havre 8.7.15.
47 Field Ambulance, admitted: boils. 4.1.16
Rejoined unit 8.1.16
Leave to UK 11.1.16 to 19.1.16.
5C Res Brigade. Posted driver 24.1.1916.
Wounded in Action (70th Brigade RFA) 17.9.16. G.S.W. (gun shot wound… this term includes shellfire) Head. Right wrist & both knees.
1 Canadian Gen Hospital, Etaples 18.9.16.
Sailed for home (UK) on Hospital Ship “Salta” 24.9.16.*
Edinburgh War Hospital “suffered from severe headaches for some days”. In Edinburgh hospital 25.9.16 to 28.10.16.
KLMCH hospital Blackpool “massage, general physical exercises etc. In hospital 28.10.16 to 16.12.16.
No. 7 Depot Frome 20.12.16.
5C Reserve Brigade posted driver 5.1.17.
Embarked ship for Salonika 23.1.17.
Disembarked Salonika 3.2.17.
Base Salonika 23.3.17.
Posted 66 SAAC Field, 23.3.17.
32 Field Ambulance; admitted “NYD” (Diarrhoea)31.3.17.
4 Cam Gen Hospital; admitted “NYD” (Dysentery)1.4.17.
To 1 Con Dep. 25.6.17 (Dysentery)
Joined Gen Base Depot 12.7.17
To 98 Bgde.AC Field.30.7.17.
66 Field Ambulance NYU. 23.2.18.
43 GH. malaria 26.2.18.
2 Depot, diarrhoea 20.3.18.
To RAB Depot 25.3.18.
Joined 78 SAAC 7.4.18.
Embarked Salonika for UK 31.5.18.
For employment in National Shipyards (shipbuilding trades), authorised by GHQ
Disembarked UK 9.6.18.
Discharge Centre, No. 4 Depot 10.6.18.
Assigned to Wm. Gray & Co. Shipyards 4.7.18. West Hartlepool.
Transferred to Army reserve class W. from 11.7.18.
Discharged “not having suffered impairment during period of war14.12.18. Category Grade One. Private Address: 9 Lily St. Hartlepool.
notes * Hospital Ship “Salta” sunk by mine 10.4.17; 52 drowned.
He died in 1958 a few days after I had returned from a voyage to India. I was 19 at the time and I still miss him. I still keep his medals (he would not wear them).