Wars Last Goodbyes
Individual Record

Kimbolton (St James)

Inscription

In

Loving memory

Of

Lance Corporal

William Edward Bray

K.S.L.I.

Who died August 31st 1915

From wounds received in France

Aged 33 years

Place of Inscription

Kimbolton (St James)

Herefordshire

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William Edward

Bray

1881

Stockton, Herefordshire

31st August 1915

William died in Norwich Hospital in Norfolk from wounds received on May 8th 1915 at Hill 60 near Bellewarde Lake on the Ypres Salient in Belgium. He was the first Kimbolton man to die during the Great War and the first to be buried at home from wounds received at the front.
According to the War Diary in early May 1915 - the battalion were holdings gaps in the frontline and had been hit hard by gas shells - their casualty figures were extensive. It seems likely William was hurt in this operation. He probably died from shellfire or gas. The Germans had first started using chlorine gas in April 1915.

33

Churchyard of St James, Kimbolton, Herefordshire

First World War

Private

2nd Battalion King's Shropshire Light Infantry

This is very weather worn - may need replacing with a new CWGC stone soon.

It is noted in the local Kington Times newspaper in May 1915 after his reported wounding that he had sent a letter to his mother Alice Bray dated 22nd April 1915. It reads:

"Sorry not to have been able to write you before, but I suppose you heard about that bit of a scratch I got. I have not felt any ill effects from it... The enemy have been giving us a dose of poisonous shells. They makes one's eyes smart and fetch the tears if you are anywhere within 400 yards of where they burst."

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