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Private Ernest Edward Campion

22937 2nd Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment

Pte CampionSon of Mr William & Mrs Louisa Campion

Aged 22 years

Died 14th August 1916

Commemorated at Vermelles British Cemetery
Grave III. N.14.

Born and enlisted at Rushden.

From the Burnt Records, Peter Inns & Kay Collins

When he enlisted in the Northamptonshire Regiment, Ernest worked as a shoe machinist, was 21 years old and lived at 62 Glassbrook Road. His brother James had been killed in action in France in May 1915 and Ernest enlisted and was examined on 11th December 1915. He was 5' 6½" tall, weighed 8 stones 8 pounds, had a 34" chest (1" expansion) and was was of good physical condition. He declared himself of the Wesleyan faith.

He was posted to the 3rd Battalion on 1st Febrary 1916, and transferred to the 1st Battalion Expeditionary Force and went to France on 31st May 1916. Six weeks later he joined th 2nd Battalion and was killed in action on 14th August 1916.

The Rushden Echo Friday 25 August 1916, transcribed by Nicky Bates

Died for His Country - Rushden Hero Killed in Action - 'A Most Willing Lad'
Company's Sympathy and Officer's Tribute

It is with regret that we report the death in action of Pte E E Campion, 22937, Northants Regt., son of Mrs Campion, 62, Glassbrook-road, Rushden. Mrs Campion received the news through an officer in the same battalion as her son, and we take the following extracts from the letter he sent:

"Dear Madam, - I regret to inform you that your son, Pte Ernest Edward Campion, was killed instantaneously this afternoon. Though it is but a few weeks since he joined my platoon I have found him a most willing lad, always ready to do his duty. The platoon and myself share with you in your grievous loss. He will be buried in an English soldiers' cemetery.

"To you it will be a bitter loss, yet his name will go down on the list of those who came forward willingly, dying a noble death for their country. From the officers and men of the company, please accept deepest sympathy. - Second Lieut CR Handsley."

Pte E E Campion is the second son of Mrs Campion to be killed in the war, Jim Campion being killed in May, 1915. Another son, Driver Bert Campion, RHA, who is married, is now serving in the Balkan theatre of war.

Pte E E Campion enlisted just after last Christmas, being employed by his brother, of Messrs. Ashford and Campion, heel-makers, Newton road, Rushden. He went out to France shortly afterwards, but stayed at the base a few weeks, the doctor declaring him not quite fit for trench service. Eventually the doctor reported him fit and he took his place with a Northants battalion in the firing line, but not with the battalion in which he enlisted.

Mrs Campion received two letters from her son Ernest as late as last Thursday, one dated Aug. 11th and the other dated Aug. 13th, both stating that he was quite well, so evidently he was killed last Friday (or possibly Thursday afternoon) as Mrs Campion received the officer's letter on Sunday.

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