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Remembered Today:


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"Only With Honour"



Monday 3rd July 1916. Marais ADS.

I saw one of  our aeroplanes brought down today by anti aircraft guns, the shell seemed to burst right on the plane, certainly the petrol tank was hit because a great sheet of flame suddenly leapt up. For a few seconds the machine kept on an even keel then dived down but as suddenly righted  himself and for a few breathless moments it seemed as if the pilot was still master. Gradually however her nose dropped and she began to descend at a steeper and steeper angle until it became quite obvious that she was hopelessly out of control. Then for half a minute we watched her, not dropping like a stone but fluttering slowly to earth like a butterfly. It made me feel positively ill to watch this horrible thing taking place and yet I was fascinated beyond words at the sight.

Well it fell between The lines in " no mans land" where 600 or 700 yards separated the trenches. O'Kell the M.O to the Sherwood Foresters, although comparatively elderly immediately ran out - A very plucky act! The two men were dead, but they got them in without themselves being hit. And later, the bodies were brought to the ADS where Porter and I collected all their belongings. The pilot had compound fracture of the jaw, the observer had no obvious injuries.


Tuesday 4th July.

After a bombardment two coy's of the regiment at Festubert went over but although they got into the first and second lines and did some good work they got badly caught by machine guns between the lines. It is generally believed that the enemy expecting the attack had machine guns actually between the lines waiting for our men. We had seven motor cars at our disposal and three extra officers to help. We were very busy from 1.30 a.m. until 6.00 a.m. and passed about 90 wounded down the line. Our evacuation from the aid posts by trolleys along the rails was most successful and we had no congestion.


*All material produced or reproduced here and throughout this blog is the sole copyright of the holder of the diaries of Reginald Hannay Fothergill*


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Thank you for posting this. I hope others will read it. Cheers.

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Your welcome Fetubi.... It is lovely story of the doctors  life in WW1. Not just the fighting, it covers, love,  leave, illness, recuperation and being wounded among many other things. I think there is no more than a dozen days not covered  ( another side to the men in the trenches)

I think I will now stop posting on the blog and concentrate on putting it to print. It has so much to offer to the serious researchers amongst you all. Some good info has been given me by GWF members (for my interest only)  I will leave the diaries as they are apart from entering the names of the 7th batt who died and a few others that the doctor mentioned which gives these men a time and a place and sometimes how they died (instead just a name on a piece of cold stone) and some points of interest, not many because I want Reg's words to speak for themselves, if that makes sense.


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