At least four of my relatives are memorialised at Ypres. Melville John Pilgrim, Roy Richard Weir and Gilbert John Blythman are all listed on the same panel at the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, which lists the names of those, whose graves are unknown or where there was no body remaining to bury. The memorial bears the names of over 54,000 men.
|Ypres (Menin Gate) memorial, Belgium|
According to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website, the traffic is stopped at 8pm each night while members of the local fire brigade sound the Last Post in the roadway under the memorial's arches.
One day I shall visit and pay respect to my relatives who lost their lives during World War I.
|Melville John Pilgrim|
Source: Mapping our Anzacs
|Broodseinde Ridge - 1917/1918|
|Broodseinde Ridge - Present|
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission website provides more details about Melville and the memorial plaques at Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial.
The Red Cross Wounded and Missing List on the Australian War Memorial Website provides many statements from witnesses to his death, including the one below;
The final resting place of my second cousin, 3 x removed, Ernest William Warner, is at Ypres, Menin Road South Military Cemetery . Ernest was born at Hanging Houghton, Northamptonshire on the 21st January 1892. Unfortunately he was killed in battle on the Western European Theatre (France & Flanders) on his 24th Birthday, 21st January 1916.
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission allows you to create a memorial PDF, which summarises the details of the soldier. You will note on the certificate below, it also gives details of parents and an address.
|An example of the certificate, which can be created|
on the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website
Roy was born 21st August 1897 at Kinimakatka and grew up in the small farming community of Winiam. His birth certificate states his name as Richard Royal James Weir but all documents thereafter state Roy Richard Weir. He attended the same primary school at Winiam as most of his cousins, including my grandmother.
At least eight of the children in the picture below are relatives.
Polygon Wood, Belgium on the 25th September 1917. He had just turned 20.
Gilbert John Blythman is also memorialised on the same plaque. He was a labourer from Nhill when he joined the Australian Infantry Forces. Gilbert was born 9th August 1888 and died at the Western Front in France on the 4th October 1917, age 29. He left a wife and two children at home.
The AIF Project is another good source of obtaining information about ANZACs. You can read more about Gilbert on the website.
Photo by International War Graves Photography Project
|Ev & Rene Blythman lost their father |
when they were aged four and two respectively.
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