Sunday, November 11, 2007

Walter Poole Terry

It's that time of the year to remember Walter Poole Terry, my Great Grandfather, gassed in The Great War, died at home in the Mumbles four months after the Armistice.

I only really found out about Walter last year, when we were invited by Paul Terry, one of his other Great Grandchildren to attend the re-dedication of the Mumbles War Memorial, following the addition of his name, and others, who had not been recognised as war deaths for various reasons (died after the war, merchant seamen, not army/navy/raf etc).

We visited him at Oystermouth cemetery yesterday, and left a bunch of white flowers, for peace, in the hope that no-one in our family ever has to go through what he did. I'll post a piccie of his stone tomorrow.

The funny thing is that I never knew his story as a child. I walked within 10 feet of his grave every day for two years on the way to and from school, unaware of his presence. He must have been only with my great grandmother for a few years before being packed off to the front, spent years in france, and then died shortly after returning home. I guess he was a small part of her life, leaving her a young widow with identical twin boys, and a younger brother to raise alone.

She was one heck of a woman, Ma, as we knew her, and she took up a huge role in my brothers and my upbringing, as my parents were busy in the shop. Martin practically lived with her for weeks on end, and she lived until I was well into my teens. I'll remember her, too, today.


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