Tuesday 2 May 1916 – We Lost 251
While a German 21-cm shell in which several holes have been bored is being steamed in a laboratory for study purposes the box of shaving in which it is packed catches fire. The officer in charge of the laboratory at once sends for help to the nearest Army Service Corps fire station, orders all persons to leave the building and warns the inhabitants of the neighboring houses that a serious explosion is imminent. On receipt of the request for help Lieutenant Sidney Albert Rowlandson, Mechanic Staff Sergeant Thomas Michael Walton and Privates Alexander Anderson and Joseph Thomas Lawrence at once collect fire extinguishers and proceed by motor to the laboratory. They enter the building, and after about two minutes are able to reach the burning shell which they drag into the yard and extinguish. For their actions all four men will be awarded the Albert Medal.
George and Sarah Avison of York are killed instantly in a Zeppelin raid by a direct hit on their home in Upper Price Street. Seven other people die and 28 were injured but due to wartime censorship full details will not be released until 2nd May 1945 – exactly 40 years after the raid.
Today’s losses include:
- Civilians killed in York
- A family that will lose five sons in the Great War
- The son of a member of the clergy
- Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War
Today’s highlighted casualties include:
- Captain Charles Henry Slade Vaudrey (Manchester Regiment) is killed in Mesopotamia at age 33. His twin brother will be killed on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. They are sons of ‘Sir’ William and Lady Vaudrey.
- Second Lieutenant Edward Wilson (South African Infantry) is killed. His brother was killed last September and they are sons of Canon Wilson.
- Private Herbert Alfred Harman (Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry) dies of wounds as a prisoner of war in Mesopotamia at age 29. He is the second of five brothers to die in the last half of the Great War. He was taken prisoner at Kut.
- Private Herbert Walters (Warwickshire Regiment) is killed at age 25. His brother was killed last September.