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Remembered Today:

In From The Cold - 28.04.08


Terry Denham
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CWGC added the following 'new' WW1 casualty to its Debt of Honour database today – Monday 28th April

Bmdr Reginald BUCKMAN

L/40859 C Bty, 189 Bde, Royal Field Artillery

Died 07.10.16 Age 25

Buried: Highbrook (All Saints) Churchyard, Sussex, UK

NOT FORGOTTEN

The above casualty was put forward by GWF on 02.01.08 after I ‘found’ him one evening due to pure chance. It was a case just waiting to be stumbled upon.

The story is (forgive the long preamble but it sets the scene)….

I recently moved house and for a while I thought I was going to move to a neighbouring village – Ardingly (it never happened). Just after New Year, at about midnight, I thought idly to myself that I would be attending the 2008 Remembrance Day service at a new war memorial. Then I realised that I did not know where the Ardingly memorial was sited and so I looked it up on Martin Edward’s excellent www.roll-of-honour.com website.

I found that it was located in the local church and started to browse through the names listed upon it with their short biographies. I came to Reginald Buckman and would have passed him over but for the fact that the text stated that he died of wounds in 1916 and was buried in Highbrook Churchyard (a hamlet next to Ardingly). Now, having visited every war grave in Sussex several times, I knew that there were no war graves in Highbrook Churchyard so my interest was grabbed.

I decided to get his death certificate and found the reference for it on Ancestry. That should have proven whether he was a non-com or not. However, just before I ordered it online, the thought occurred to me that his service record might just still exist and that the ‘B’ names had recently been put online by Ancestry. So I checked without really expecting to find it still in existence.

Lo and behold! There it was – and not the usual page or two of half burnt Attestation Forms. There were over twenty pages of documents – all in undamaged condition. The icing on the cake was that about fifteen of the documents related to his being wounded in France on 24.09.16 and subsequently being hospitalised in St John’s Hospital, Etaples and then transported to King George’s Hospital in London – gun shot wounds in the back and arm. There were even copies of letters to his mother saying he was badly wounded and in hospital in France (permission to visit refused) and another saying that he was transferred to London and was seriously wounded.

The documents went on to confirm his death in hospital on 07.10.16. I was so amazed at this wealth of documentation that I decided to submit it to CWGC/MoD without the death certificate. The proof was all there in his military file. He was a genuine non-com who died in service of wounds. MoD accepted him without question in about ten days.

After submitting him, I went to Highbrook Churchyard the same day to see if he had a marked grave. Sadly, he did not though I found headstones bearing other members of the Buckman family who died over a long period – obviously a well-established local family. CWGC will now erect an official stone in due course.

Sorry for the long ramble but it was such a lucky find that it still makes me think that Reginald was desperate to be found and ‘pushed’ me that extra inch to look for his service record online!

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MAY HE REST IN PEACE

Well done Terry - a very good result

Chris

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Well done Terry

Sometimes fate intervenes in these things, and this seems to be one such case.

RIP Reginald

Carole

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Guest KevinEndon
After submitting him, I went to Highbrook Churchyard the same day to see if he had a marked grave. Sadly, he did not though I found headstones bearing other members of the Buckman family who died over a long period – obviously a well-established local family. CWGC will now erect an official stone in due course.

Firstly well done on this one, he certainly had, had enough of being out in the cold. Can you tell us please do they know exactly where Buckman was buried if not will they put a stone up saying "believed to be buried in this cemetery" or would the CWGC do something witht he other members of the familys stone.

Kevin

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It is another one of those "things" that was meant to be - well done Terry.

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Brilliant-well done. Super feeling as I have just discovered with one of my own. (Otis Ormerod) Ralph.

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