Thursday, 9 July 2015

Caldwell, John - Private (476)

Private John Caldwell
1st Battalion,
Welsh Guards,
Killed in Action,
2nd July 1916,
Age 26,
Buried Brandhoek Military Cemetery

Newspaper Report:

Private John Caldwell whose death in the fighting line was recently officially notified to his relatives at 27 Chapel Street, Haslingden, met a gallant soldier's death on July 2nd, and most sympathetic messages have been forwarded by the Captain of his regiment and also the chaplain.  He was 25 years of age, and leaving his employment as a spinner at Longholme, Rawtenstall, he enlisted in the Grenadier Guards on the last day of 1914, and on New Year's Day left Haslingden, since which time he had only had 48 hours furlough.  He was eventually transferred to the Welsh Guards, and was in attendance at Buckingham Palace when the King presented the colours to the newly formed Welsh Guards.  His captain's letter of sympathy mentions that his death took place from shell shock in the trenches, and the captain goes on to say: "He was a good fellow and was doing well in the machine gun team.  
On the night prior to his death he was acting as my orderly and it is sad to think of such promising heroes being cut off in this awful war.  But you have the consolation of knowing that he fell doing his duty for his country.  What better end can there be than that?"  Caldwell went to France on July 3rd, 1915, and had thus been out of England twelve months on the day of his death.  He was connected with Haslingden Parish Church and School, and also with St. Andrew's Mission, being a member of the choir of the last named church.
A memorial service was held on Sunday morning at the Parish Church, when the vicar, the Rev G.W. Clarke, M.A. was the preacher, while in the evening there was a memorial service at the Mission Chapel, where Mr. Phillips paid an eloquent tribute to Private Caldwell's memory.

Newspaper Memorials:

In loving memory of Private John Caldwell, 27 Chapel Street, who was killed in France on July 2nd 1916.

"He was my brother, truly fond,
He was both good and true,
A better if other never lived,
His equals were but few.

We think of him in silence,
And his name we oft recall,
But there's nothing left to answer
But his photo on the wall.

Some day we hope to meet him,
Some day we know not when,
To clasp his hand in the better land,
Never to part again."

From his Father, Sisters and Brothers.

"We cannot forget him nor do we intend,
We think of him dearly, and will to the end;
We mourn for our brother in sorrow unseen,
He is with us in memories of days that have been."

From his Father, Brothers and Sisters.

Private John Caldwell Census information - Click over census to enlarge