Thursday 29 August 1918 We Lost 1,116

by greatwarliveslost

Second Lieutenant Cecil Patrick Healy (Australian Infantry) is killed in an attack on a German trench at age 34.  He was an Olympic swimmer in both 1906 at Athens and 1912 at Stockholm.  The highlight of his career was being a member of the Gold medal winning 4X200-meter free style Australian swim team.  Also in 1912 he won the silver medal in the 100-meter free style race and competed in the 400-meter race.  In 1906 he won the bronze medal in the 100-meter free style race and also competed in the 400-meter race.  He will be inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1981.

Captain William Henry Hubbard (Royal Air Force) brings down one enemy aircraft having fought ten minutes with several Fokker biplanes.  Captain Harold Mervyn Ireland (Royal Air Force) leads a large formation detailed for a long distance bombing raid on certain enemy docks.  A strong and adverse wind is blowing and thick clouds almost obscure the ground rendering the task of reaching such a distant object very difficult. Carefully studying the compass and making what he considers due allowances for the wind he leads his formation to a point which he judges will be in the vicinity of the objective.  A break in the clouds shows that he is correct, and the docks are effectively bombed. Captain Allan Hepburn and Second Lieutenant Horace George Eldon shoot down a Fokker D VII east of Lille.

At Fremicourt Lieutenant Cecil Harold Sewell (Royal West Kent Regiment attached Light Tank Corps) while in command of a section of Whippet light tanks gets out of his own tank and crosses open ground under heavy machine-gun fire to rescue the crew of another Whippet of his section which has side-slipped into a shell-hole overturned and caught fire.  The door of the tank became jammed against the side of the shell-hole but unaided he digs away the entrance to the door and releases the crew.  After having extricated the crew, seeing one of his own crew lying wounded behind his tank, he again dashes across the open ground to his assistance.  He is hit in doing so, but succeeds in reaching the tank when a few minutes later he is again hit, fatally, in the act of dressing his wounded driver. During the whole of this period he is within full view and short range of the enemy machine guns and rifle-pits, and throughout, by his prompt and heroic action, showed an utter disregard for his own personal safety.  Lieutenant Sewell will be posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross and dies at age 23.  He is the last of three brothers who are killed in the Great War.

Today’s losses include:

  • An Olympic Gold Medal swimmer and member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame
  • A Victoria Cross winner
  • The brother of a Victoria Cross winner
  • Multiple families that will lose two, three and four sons in the Great War
  • A battalion commander
  • The son of the Sheriff Substitute for Lankarkshire
  • The son of a member of the clergy
  • A Great War Poet

Today’s highlighted casualties include:

  • Lieutenant Colonel Edward Twelvetree Saint DSO (commanding 1st/1st Cambridgeshire Regiment) dies of wounds at #53 casualty clearing station received the previous day at age 33. He was an acting Brigadier General twice in the Great War the first time from mid-July to early August 1918 and then from the 21st to 27th of August.
  • Captain Thomas Alexander Fyfe MC (Highland Light Infantry) is killed in action at age 25. He is the son of the Sheriff Substitute of Lankarkshire and has a brother who was killed in July 1916.
  • Lieutenant Wilfred Hay Ruxton (Royal Air Force) is accidentally killed at age 28. He is the son of the late Reverend F D Ruxton.
  • Second Lieutenant Henry Lamont Simpson (Lancashire Fusiliers) is killed by a sniper at Hazebrouck at age 21. He is a Great War poet.  His only collection of poetry, Moods and Tenses, will be published the year after the war ends.
  • Lance Corporal Thomas Armitage Salmon (Australian Infantry) is killed at age 20. He is one of five brothers who served three of whom fell.
  • Lance Corporal William Corcoran (South Lancashire Regiment) dies of wounds at age 20. His two brothers have already lost their lives in the Great War.
  • Private Charles William Brown (London Regiment) is killed at age 19. His brother was killed in August of last year.
  • Private Raymond Courtney (Australian Infantry) is killed at age 22. His brother was killed in August 1916.
  • Private Arthur Frederick Cornwell (London Regiment) is killed at age 30. He is the brother of Victoria Cross winner John Travers Cornwell.
  • Private Alexander Taylor (Gordon Highlanders) is killed at age 23. He is the last of four brothers who will lose their lives in the Great War.