8 November 2009


This time last year I mentioned a few of my ancestors who served and today I thought I'd tell you what I've found out about them since.

Grandad FWP was listed as William in the 1911 census and worked as a general labourer. John Langford and his wife Harriett had a child that neither my 2nd cousin Bob nor I can identify; it's great having the 1911 census but it's causing as many problems as it's solving!

Freeman Langford, like his brother William before him, was a regular soldier and was serving in Lucknow in 1911 - that'll be where he caught malaria. His youngest brother Ben was a brickie's labourer and living with his aunt in Nutholt Lane, Ely, in 1911.

I found two new soldiers this year: the first courtesy of Ancestors magazine. Harry Culpin (5th cousin 3xremoved) was serving in Bloomfontein and his family was out there too. And Alfred Staden (1st cousin 3xremoved) was another regular, in the RAMC at Aldershot.

Yesterday I was selling poppies in town, carefully positioning myself in the sun moving, like a cat, with the rays. I'd like to think that my presence put off the daily gathering of the Special Brew University.

One of my customers, during the 90 or so minutes I stood there, was an old gent who told me that he'd served during the war; so I asked him where . . . . he was a 19-year-old Lieutenant in charge of one of the landing craft on D-Day.

Anyone who knows me will be aware that I am not often stuck for words. I was yesterday. All I could think to say was "Thank you".

When you go home, tell them of us and say: For your tomorrow, we gave our today.

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