I have always wondered whether you were one of my relatives, either from my birth tree or from my adopted tree. It would be amazing if you were related to me, but I don't think that is likely.
You do however represent my ancestors who fought during The Great War, mistakenly thinking it would be the war to end all wars, without any thought that one day we might, at some point, contemplate the possibility that World War 3 could occur. The world is still a dangerous place but the weapons mankind has developed are so powerful that no sane person would ever dare to use them as the consequences would be terminal for everyone.
Much has changed since you went to War one hundred years ago although I don't think human nature itself has changed much. It would be good if somehow we could meet for a coffee and a chat to discuss your life and mine ........ and the different worlds we live in. Our parents and grandparents were always reluctant to talk about what they experienced, which was understandable, but the current generation is hungry to learn about the past.
Serjeant Percy Thomas Ross DCM, London Regiment (1st / 23 battallion) who died on 25th May 1915 at the Battle of Festubert aged 42 and remembered on Le Touret Memorial. He was a 2nd cousin 2 x removed.
Second Lieutenant Victor Bradshaw Haskins of the East Surrey Regiment (attached to the 5th Shropshire Light Infantry) who died on the battlefields of Ypres on 20th November 1915, aged 24. He is remembered at Ypres Reservoir Cemetery and was a great uncle.
Lance Sergeant Robert Learmouth Sandeman of the Scots Guards (2nd battallion). Died on the 15th November 1916, aged 25 when he was shot in the back by a captured German POW. He is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial and was a great great uncle.
Sergeant James Walker Sandeman of the Royal Scots Fusiliers. Died on the 19th April 1917, aged 24. He died during a disasterous attack during The Second Battle of Gaza in Palestine. He is remembered on the Jerusalem Memorial and was a great great uncle.
Private Frank Arthur Musgrove of The Queens (Royal West Surrey Regiment) (2nd battallion The Queens Own Buffs). Died of his wounds on the 5th October 1917, aged 19 - Battle of Broodseinde, Passchendaele, Flanders. He is remembered at Godewaersvelde British Cemetary and was a great uncle.
Each of them, like you, is remembered every year at eleven o'clock, on the eleventh day of the eleventh month and we wear poppies with pride in remembrance to all of you brave young men who gave your lives so that we could live in peace.
Respect to you and your fellow soldiers,