Sunday 9 July 1916 – We Lost 1,064
The drifter frigates Bird, Clavis Ben Bui and Astrum Spei while on patrol in the Adriatic are attacked by the Austrian cruiser Novara. The Astrum Spei and Clavis are both sunk while the Bird and Ben Bui although damaged were able to return to port. The Skipper of Clavis George M Geddes RNR is killed at age 49 as is the Skipper of Bird William Murray who dies at age 27. A total of eight crewmen are killed among the five ships.
Today’s losses include:
- Multiple battalion commanders
- An Assistant Head Liverpool Police constable
- An England Rugby International
- A Rosslyn Park Rugby footballer and member of MCC
- A Gold Medal winning golfer
- Multiple families that will two and three sons in the Great War
- Multiple sons of members of the clergy
- The son of a Baronet
- The son of a Justice of the Peace
- Multiple sons of jurists
- An Aylesbury United footballer
- An Assistant Master at George Street Boys School
Today’s highlighted casualties include:
- Lieutenant Colonel William Alfred Smith (commanding 18th Manchester Regiment) dies of wounds received the previous day at age 36. He is the Assistant Head Constable of the Liverpool Police.
- Lieutenant Colonel Francis Holden Shuttleworth Rendall DSO (Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry commanding 5th York and Lancashire Regiment) is killed at age 37.
- Captain Robert Laurence Pillman (Royal West Kent Regiment) is killed at age 23. He earned a cap for England playing rugby versus France in 1914 and was a winner of the Gold Medal of the London Solicitors Golfing Society.
- Captain William Alan Smiles (Irish Rifles) is killed at age 34. His brother will be killed in August 1917 and they are grandsons of Dr. Samuel Smiles of self-help fame.
- Lieutenant Graham Lawson Lewis (Lancashire Fusiliers) dies of wounds received the previous day at age 24. He came to France in May 1915, returning home in December of that year with a dislocated shoulder. He returned to France in May of this year. At the time when Warsaw was evacuated by the Russians he performed a feat that shows his daring. The Germans serving in the trenches opposite triumphantly erected a small board containing the news “Warsaw capitulated.” During the night, at considerable risk, Lieutenant Lewis crept across the intervening space and secured the board as a trophy of war, no doubt much to the disgust of the Germans when they discovered their loss next morning.
- Captain Alexander James Macintosh Shaw (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed. He is the son of the Archdeacon of Tokyo.
- Lieutenant William Clarke McConnell (Irish Rifles) is killed at age 31. He is the son of ‘Sir’ Robert John McConnell 1st
- Lieutenant Jacinth Sacheverell Wilmot-Sitwell (Coldstream Guards) is killed at age 21. He is the son of Edward Sachevell Wilmot-Sitwell JP and his cousin was killed last year in the same month.
- Lieutenant Archibald McDonald Hogarth (Royal Field Artillery) is killed in action at age 36. One brother will died last year while a second will die of wounds in 1918.
- Lieutenant Evelyn Henry Veresmith (Royal Fusiliers) dies of wounds at age 25. His brother will die of wounds in April 1917.
- Second Lieutenant Donal Charles O’Connell (Connaught Rangers attached Inniskilling Fusiliers) is killed at age 21. His brother will be accidentally killed in July 1918 in an explosion.
- Second Lieutenant Frederick Arthur John Ellicott (King’s Own Scottish Borderers) is killed in action at age 24. He is the son of His Honor Judge A B Ellicott.
- Second Lieutenant Charles Victor Hewson (Royal Flying Corps) is killed at age 22. He is the son of Judge Charles E Hewson.
- Second Lieutenant Bernard Bryant Salmon MC (Manchester Regiment) is killed at age 19. He is the son of the Reverend William Bryant Salmon Rector of Stoke Newington.
- Second Lieutenant Charles Geoffrey Tomlin (London Regiment) dies of wounds at age 25. He is a Rosslyn Park Rugby footballer and a member of MCC.
- Sergeant John Douglas Blease (Manchester Regiment) is killed at age 25. His brother will be killed next July.
- Corporal Charles F Perkins (Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry) is killed. He is a former player for the Aylesbury United Football Club.
- Corporal Percival Stanley St John Barr (Canadian Mounted Rifles) is killed at age 35. He is the son of the Reverend George Barr Vicar of Cropredy.
- Private Bertie Ridgwell (Essex Regiment) is killed. His brother will die of wounds in October 1917.
- Private Edward Eddie Howarth (Manchester Regiment) is killed at age 23. His older brother was killed while serving in the Royal Fusiliers two days prior.
- Rifleman Thomas Moody (London Regiment) dies of wounds received after only three days in the trenches at age 27. He is the Assistant Master at George Street Boys School.
- Private John Gorton (Manchester Regiment) is killed at age 27. His brother will be killed next April.