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Soldier remembered for service in First World War
7:50am Thursday 24th October 2013 in News
A RUNCORN-BORN soldier who saw action in the First World War has finally been remembered for his service – 95 years after he was buried.
Private Edward Lawton died in 1918 and was buried in a commoner’s grave at Flaybrick cemetery in Bidston with no mention of his war record.
It only came to light following extensive research by his great-great nephew Peter Threlfall.
He took his evidence to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, who forwarded it to the Ministry of Defence, who approved their recommendation for a headstone honouring his military service.
The stone was installed at the cemetery in September, and a dedication ceremony took place on Saturday.
Mr Threlfall, a driver for the Territorial Army, paid tribute to Edward.
He said: “He was lost in time, but now will never be forgotten. After all this time it’s a great tribute to Edward.”
Private Lawton was born in Runcorn in 1888 and spent his early years in Birkenhead.
A former bricklayers’ labourer, he joined the Wirral branch of PALS, an army of volunteers set up by Lord Kitchener to support the regular army in 1914 and joined the war effort in France in 1915.
He suffered shellshock in November 1916 and was discharged in May 1918. He died from a brain haemorrhage in 1918 and was buried in a commoner’s grave.
Peter added: “The grave was near that of a soldier called James Wall, who served at the same time and has a war grave. It was so important Edward had the same recognition. I am so grateful this has now been allowed to happen.”
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