Frank Williams was born at Kidderminster and had enlisted as a regular soldier in the Worcesters, probably just after the Boer War. By the outbreak of war in 1914 he was working for the G.P.O. in Stourbridge. He was called up as a Reservist in August and joined the 2nd Battalion. He would have faced the difficulties of the Retreat from Mons in late August and the successful recovery which came with success in the Battle of the Marne. The 2nd Battalion was sent north to Flanders in early October to meet the next German attack. On the 20th the battalion marched through Ypres, crossed the Pilckem ridge and were given orders to attack in front of Langemarck. It was 9.30 a.m. on the 21st before the attack started and within a few hundred yards they met the German forces in a short but fierce battle. They gained no ground but they forced the Germans to halt. Casualties amounted to 60, but one of the seriously wounded was Private Frank Matthews. He was to taken to a Casualty Clearing Station at Le Mans, but died of wounds on the 26th October. He was aged 31 and is buried at Le Mans West Cemetery (A 54) and commemorated on the Stourbridge and St. Thomas's Memorials.
Mary Stevens Park, Stourbridge, West Midlands, United Kingdom
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