Walter Boxley was born at Lye but later lived at 124 South Road, Stourbridge. He attended Hill St. Council School and was a member of the New Road United Methodists. He worked for Messrs. Eveson and later at Mark and Moody's printing works as a packer. He was one of the first volunteers to enlist in the Worcesters after the outbreak of war in 1914 and joined the 9th (Service) Battalion. He served at Gallipoli and was present at the evacuation. He then went to Mesopotamia and after contracting dysentery recovered in India. On return to Britain he was drafted as a sergeant to the 1st Battalion. By 1917 this battalion had experienced all the main battles of the Western Front and was preparing for the Third Battle of Ypres. They moved in June to Flanders and took over the line at 'Hell-fire Corner' on the Menin Road. While moving back into reserve on the 5th July very severe shelling caused 40 casualties. Sergeant Walter Boxley was one of those killed and is buried in Belgian Battery Corner Cemetery (1 D 15), next to Harry Topliss of Oldswinford who died in the same action. He was a most popular man and was known as 'the smiling sergeant' because of his constant cheerfulness. He was 24 years of age and is commemorated on the Stourbridge, St. Thomas's church, Methodist church and Greenfields school Memorials.
Hill St, Stourbridge, West Midlands, DY8 1AL
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