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Stories by a short, fat bastard

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782 Private (Pte) John Donald Gordon Whitton, C Company, 30th Battalion
So it has been confirmed.

782 Private (Pte) John Donald Gordon Whitton, C Company, 30th Battalion, born 1888, KIA at Fromelle 1916 (missing) was among the WW1 bodies recovered at Fromelle in 2007. He was the brother of my great grandfather.

Looks like I need to do a trip to France.

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That is remarkable to learn, a century old mystery solved. What's your family's take on all this?


Everyone is a little amazed. He sort of vanished out of the family history because he didn't have any decedents. "Grand-dad's brother died in France" is about all anyone knew.

I'm sorry for your family, but glad that at least they know now. Not that were many other possibilities, but certainty helps a lot.

And France? Make sure you look at Belgium as well.

I have to go to Amiens, and Ypres, and the Somme. But now Fromelle is at the top of the list.

He will be buried almost exactly 100 years after he died.

Yes, I was just thinking that next year will be the 100 anniversary. They had a memorial for Fromelles last year in France, I assume next year as well.

I think it's a lovely idea if some of the family is there for the reburial.

That would make him your great-great-uncle?

Anyway, it's good that you and the rest of your family can finally have some closure. Blessings upon the memory of your long-departed kin!

Everyone is pleased. It fills in a blank space on the family tree. We knew there was a brother, but he simply vanished. No one talked about the war afterward.

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