Monday, 27 April 2015

Holmes, Clifford - Private

(No soldier photo available)
9th. Bn.
Durham Light Infantry
Died 21 January 1945
Age 24

The 9th. Durham Light Infantry landed in France on D-Day, June 1944. By January 1945 they were advancing towards the River Roer and Germany itself. As they reached the village of St Joost, 13 Platoon came under exeptionally heavy shelling and mortar fire. A few survivors, including Private Clifford Holmes, sheltered in a building. Pte. Webster later described how German civilians spotted them. "Within half an hour a German tank came. Our artillery started firing. A shell hit the roof - I heard groans each side of me - Holmes and Clarke. Cliff Holmes asked me for water. The Germans then opened up with tracers and in this loft, full of flames and smoke, Holmes and Clarke passed

Clifford was the elder son of Maria and the late John William Holmes. He was aged 24. He attended George Street Mission Church, where he was Sunday School Secretary. Before he joined the Army in May 1940, he worked for Mr. J. McIntyre, Painter and Decorator.

Clifford's remains were buried in Nederweert War Cemetery, Holland. The cemetery contains 362 casualties from the battlefields in the area. Clifford lies in Plot 3, Row B, Grave 9.