By Laura Kemp • 18 November 2021 • 12:28
Bodies of WW1 soldiers found a century later finally buried. Image - Twitter
Nine First World War soldiers have finally been buried after their bodies were missing for over a century as many who fought on the battlefield between 1914 and 1918 were never found.
Three years ago, eight of the bodies were found during engineering works in De Reutel, Belgium, with the ninth body found later.
All nine of the soldiers died at the Battle of Passchendaele, lasting from July to November 1917.
The Ministry of Defence’s Joint Casualty and Compassionate Centre (JCCC) team has been working on the identities of the soldiers and tracking down their families.
Small personal items belonging to seven of the men were used by the ‘war detectives2 to identify them, while two have remained unknown.
They were commemorated as ‘Unknown Soldiers of the Great War’.
All nine of the soldiers were buried yesterday, November 17, at Tyne Cot Cemetery in Belgium among thousands of their comrades who fought with them.
Most of the men who were identified were in their twenties – second Lieutenant Leslie Wallace Ablett, 20, from Manchester, and second Lieutenant Edward Douglas Bruty, 21, from Dulwich, south London.
Also, Lance Corporal Stanley Blakeborough, 21, from Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire, and Private Harry Miller, 28, from County Durham.
Joseph Patrickson, 24, from Tyne and Wear, was awarded the Military Medal for bravery during the fighting in October 1917, along with Private Arnold Sanderson, 26, from Darlington, County Durham.
The last body identified was named as Sergeant Thomas Feasby, 32, from Eston in North Yorkshire.
All of the men were given full military honours.
Reverend Gary Watt, who led the service, said: “Today we remember with thanksgiving these brave men whom, alongside so many others, answered the call of their country, served with honour and gave their lives in the service of their nation.”
“In so doing let us commit ourselves anew to remember their courage. For by so doing we honour their memory and we reflect upon that sacrifice.”
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Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features.
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