Saturday 18 August 1917 We Lost 742

by greatwarliveslost

Frederick Hobson VC

While on patrol, Captain George Lawrence Lloyd (Royal Flying Corps) observes a two-seater Albatros upon which he dives.  The hostile observer replies with two guns but Captain Lloyd gets on the same level as the German machine and fifty yards behind it.  The hostile observer continues to fire and his tail is observed to break off, the machine going down in a vertical nose dive to crash.  It appears that in a desperate attempt to escape Lloyd, the German shot off his own tail.

A great fire destroys much of Salonika.

During a strong enemy counter-attack a Lewis gun in a forward post in a communication trench leading to the enemy lines, is buried by a shell, and the crew, with the exception of one man, killed. Sergeant Frederick Hobson (Central Ontario Regiment), though not a gunner, grasping the great importance of the post, rushes from his trench, digs out the gun, and gets it into action against the enemy who are now advancing down the trench and across the open. A jam causes the gun to stop firing. Though wounded, he leaves the gunner to correct the stoppage, rushes forward at the advancing enemy and, with bayonet and clubbed rifle, single handed, holds them back until he is killed by a rifle shot. By this time however, the Lewis gun is again in action and reinforcements shortly afterwards arriving, the enemy are beaten off. For his actions he will be awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross.

Today’s losses include:

  • A Victoria Cross winner
  • The son of a Baronet
  • A Military Chaplain
  • Multiple families that will lose two sons in the Great War
  • Two families that will lose four sons in the Great War

Today’s highlighted casualties include:

  • Major Arthur Philip Joseph Radcliffe MC (Royal Field Artillery) dies of wounds at age 21. He is the grandson of ‘Sir’ Joseph Percival Pickford Radcliffe 3rd
  • Chaplain the Reverend Alfred Wilcox (Young Men’s Christian Association) is killed while serving on the Western Front at age 29.
  • Second Lieutenant William Wylie Houston (Royal Engineers) is killed in action at age 30. He is an associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects.
  • Sergeant Charles James Comerford (Royal Flying Corps) is killed in action at age 26. His brother was killed in September 1914.
  • Lance Corporal John Hennell (West Surrey Regiment) is killed in action one year before his brother also loses his life.
  • Rifleman Gilbert Garraway (Rifle Brigade) is killed at age 26. He is one of four brothers who will lose their lives in the Great War.
  • Private George Alfred Fox (Quebec Regiment) dies of wounds at Etaples two weeks after his brother was killed in action.
  • Private Abraham Bradford (West Surrey Regiment) is killed in action at age 22. He is one of four brothers who are killed in the Great War.