William Evans was married to Phyllis and lived at Maltmill Lane, Blackheath. He served in the Royal Field Artillery and was attached to the 25th Division Ammunition Column. In 1917 they had fought hard at Messines and in the long third battle of Ypres. In 1918 loses were worse. The 25th Division lost over 7,000 casualties in the battle of the Lys in April 1918 and were sent for reorganisation to the quiet Aisne sector. When they had just settled in, reports arrived that a major German attack was imminent. On the 26th May men went to battle positions and the Ammunition Column was sent to Baslieus near Fismes some way behind the front line. At 2 a.m. on the 27th a massive bombardment was unleashed from the German lines over the troops extending back to Fimes. This was followed by the infantry attack in great force and a long retreat by the British. The ammunition column worked under heavy fire but many guns were lost during the day and many lives were lost. Among them was Lance Bombardier William Evans who was 36 years of age and is commemorated on the Soissons, Blackheath and Halesowen Memorials.
ST JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH,High St,Halesowen,Dudley,West Midlands,B63 3BB,England, B63 3BB
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