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Remembered Today:

Lt. H.R. Smith North Staffordshire Regiment kia 21 March 1918


Ancre1917
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I received this from the JCCC this morning:

I am writing to inform you that the case you submitted to CWGC, hoping to have identified the grave of Lieutenant Harold Rymer Smith, has now been accepted by JCCC. We have therefore requested that CWGC now change the headstone over the grave to reflect this.

I am currently in the process of trying to trace the family of Lieutenant Smith and a rededication service will be held at his graveside in due course. I will of course keep you informed as to when this will happen.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

 

Any idea how long it will be before the CWGC change the name on the grave stone and when the rededication ceremony is likely to take place? Piece of string no doubt.  Tracing the family "Smith", who were originally from Putney in London, may cause a few problems as well, I would have thought.

Richard

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Congratulations Richard on the successful outcome.

I have just re-read your original thread that sparked an interesting discussion between the late Richard Laughton and LDT:

https://www.greatwarforum.org/topic/254937-icrc-records-of-british-dead/#comment-2579961

By the way, although you probably already know, Harold's brother, Ralph Prichard Smith was also KIA whilst serving with the North Staffs as a subaltern in August 1917.

 

Edited by MelPack
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Thanks. I didn’t know anything about his brother. Interesting that there were two brothers from London in the North Staffs.

I wonder if that will help JCCC track down the family. With a name like Smith, its not going to be easy. Any idea on the time lag between this decision, the renaming of the grave stone and the rededication service?

Richard

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Hi Richard

Well done! Another soldier to be taken off the unknowns list. Keep me informed of when the service will take place.

Regards

Andy

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Hi Richard

I have looked on Ancestry and there is someone who has done a family tree for Lt Harold Rhymer Smith. I think they may be related to his mother Abigail Smith (Prichard) its on the 1901   Census. Have a look it might be a good starting point to find family members.

Regards

Andy  

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Thanks Andy. Fortunately for me (and the JCCC), Mel has already done a brilliant job in tracking  down the family and has told CWGC

I’ll certainly put the date up, if and when CWGC tell me. The best guess, apparently, is that it could be at least a year before it takes place. I suppose the Mercian Regiment will be involved (even though there’s no Staffordshire Battalion in the ranks today). 

Richard

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Hi Richard

thanks for replying. Which members of the family have they traced? I have a rededication service to attend on the 17th November 2022 for a soldier whom I identified, hope the weather is kind to us. The family who I traced are his Grandchildren so they were the perfect one to discover. They had been searching for years to find out what happened to him, He is the fourth soldier I have successfully identified. Keep in touch and keep looking.

Kind Regards

Andy 

 

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Andy

Mel has tracked them down.  Nieces I think; he didn’t have any children it appears

There were quite a number of UBS in the German mass grave where Lt. Harold Smith was found- 60+.  I will look through the non North Staffs to see if there are any other clues  

Richard

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