|Date of birth:||1898|
|Place of birth:||Southampton|
|Battalion:||2nd Wireless Signal (226th Squadron)|
|Rank / Service No:||Sapper, 24475|
|Died:||24th August 1917, aged 19 years|
|Buried:||Basra War Cemetery, Iraq (Plot V, Row C, Grave 7)|
Albert was the seventh of 10 siblings born to Abel Thomas and Elizabeth Ann Bunn (nee Davies), who married in Loughborough in 1882.
Abel was born in Snettisham, Norfolk in 1860; he died in Southampton on 15 October 1921, leaving £476 3s 5d to his son Arthur Cecil.
Elizabeth was born in Shepshed, Leicestershire in 1862 and she passed away in Southampton in 1932.
James Abel b. 1883 Shepshed d. 1943 Southampton Married Violet C. Reynolds in Southampton in 1912.
Annie Elizabeth b. 1885 Shepshed d. 1973 Southampton Married William Dudley in Southampton in 1911. Married Frederick S. Cole in Southampton in 1950.
Frederick Charles b. 1886 Southampton d. 1961 Fakenham Married Elizabeth Katherine ?? in Southampton in 1908.
Florence May b. 1889 Southampton d. 1968 Neath Married Douglas T. Thomas in Southampton in 1913. Married George Westcott in Southampton in 1914. Married Michael Donovan in Southampton in 1932.
Thomas Reginald b. 1894 Southampton d. 1925 Southampton Married Elsie Pickering in Southampton in 1914.
Arthur Cecil b. 1896 Southampton d. 1971 Christchurch Married Frances M. Lush in Southampton in 1921.
Dorothy Maud b. 1900 Southampton d. 1963 Southampton Married Reuben F. Humby in Southampton in 1924.
Harry b. 1901 Southampton d. 1950 Canterbury Married Mary H. Davidson in Southampton in 1935.
Lionel Gordon b. 1903 Southampton d. 1978 New Forest Married Jesse M. Wallace in Stepney in 1933.
The force fighting in Mesopotamia was principally one of the Indian Army. The only British formation present was the 13th (Western) Division.
They arrived from Gallipoli, via Egypt, in February 1916.
They were sent straight into battle, at the siege of Kut. This ended on 29 April 1916 when the garrison surrendered to the Turks.
The Division took part in the capture of Baghdad in March 1917.
Albert was one of 27K Commonwealth soldiers who died either in action or of sickness…more died through disease than via a bullet or shell.
Basra was the base of the Mesopotamia Expeditionary Force from November 1914.
The M.E.F used Makina Masul Old Cemetery from December 1914 until October 1916 and the Makina Masul New Extension was begun alongside the old one in August 1917.
These 2 sites, enlarged later when more than 1000 graves were brought in from other burial grounds, now form Basra War Cemtery.
The cemetery contains 2551 burials from WW1. all headstones were removed in 1935, because of corrosion, and the names are now recorded on a screen wall.
Albert’s headstone read: “ Ever in the thoughts of those at home.”
|Published:||22nd June 2016|
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