Sunday, 17 January 2016

Luton Man Fighting Since Mons is Killed

Junction of Collingdon Street and New Bedford Road [Z50/75/184]

Monday 17th January 1916: Although no official intimation has yet been received there is no doubt as to the death of Private Stephen George Hare of the 1st Bedfords. Mrs. Hare, who resides at 8 Collingdon Street, first received the sad news on Saturday morning from Shillington. A young man, who was at the front with her son wrote to his relatives at Shillington. The letter from Shillington follows: “Dear Aunt – I’ve thought a lot about you this morning and feel I must write s few lines to know whether you have heard anything about dear Steve. I had a letter from a young man this morning who lives near your sister. His name is Walter Armstrong and he is in the Service Co the same one that Steve was, and he also said that Steve was killed on January 6th. Poor boy; I am so grieved about him. Walter was only fifteen yards from him when he was killed. He was shot in the head by a bullet and did not live five minutes. He said they buried him very nicely. Poor fellow, he is very sorry to lose him, for Steve was the only fellow in the Company that Walter knew. I feel so pleased that someone was with him at the time who knew him to let us know”.

“I had my last letter from Steve on New Year’s Day and in it he said that he had had a bad cold but it was a bit better. I am sure that if you have not heard anything about it you will be upset, and I do feel so sorry for you all. I hope God will give you strength to bear this great trial. I am sending the young man’s address so that if you care to write to him you may”.

Private Hare was only 25 years of age, and was a single man. He had not long finished seven years with the 1st Bedfords when war broke out and had been in South Africa and other parts of the Empire.

For some months he was at the Skefco works and on the outbreak of war, as a reservist, was called up with the 1st Bedfords. He came home on leave last August.

Source: Luton News 20th January 1916

(1) Private Hare was killed in action on 6th January and is buried in Carnoy Military Cemetery.

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