|Rushden Echo, 9th October, 1914, transcribed by Jim Hollis
Rushden Victim of The War
Sergt. Samuel Clayton Gives His Live For His Country - Sympathy of The King And Queen
It is with sincere regret, intermixed with a considerable amount of pride at the noble self-sacrifice of one of Rushden’s gallant sons, that we record the death of Sergt. Samuel Clayton, 5799, of the 2nd Suffolk Regiment, who has given his life in the service of his King and country.
The late Sergt. Clayton was the eldest son of Mr. Walter Clayton, of 151, Queen-street, Rushden. He was 31 years of age, and as a youth passed through the Sunday School of the Park-road Baptist Church, of which organisation his family have been life-long associates, his father bring a member.
The late Sergt. Clayton had seen between 13 and 14 years’ service in His Majesty’s forces, having enlisted when he was but about 17 years of age, at the time of the great fire at Messrs. J. Cave and Sons’ factory. He had always expressed a wish to fight for his country, and he could have desired no more glorious end than that which has befallen him, having laid down his life for others.
A model son, he was greatly attached to his family, and it was his regular custom to visit them twice a year when in England. The news of his death has, therefore, come as a great blow to his parents and brothers and sisters. We feel assured that every resident of his native town of Rushden will feel a thrill of pride in the knowledge of this glorious end of a promising young life.
After his enlistment it was largely due to the whole-hearted interest he took in the work of his choice that
rewarded his efforts. It was during five years’ service in India that he received his first stripe and on his subsequent promotion to sergeant on his return to this country he was for some time acting schoolmaster to the King’s Royal Rifles.
The official information concerning his decease was received from the Record Office, Warley, on Saturday evening, and was worded as follows :-
“Sir, - It is my painful duty to inform you that a report has this day been received from the War Office notifying the death of No. 5799, Sergt. Clayton, 2nd Suffolk Regiment, which occurred at……………..on Sep. 9th, 1914, and I am to express to you the sympathy and regret of the Army Council at your loss. The cause of death was killed in action.
I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
C. W. FITZGERALD,
Captain No. 9 district,
For officer in charge of records.
Accompanying this letter was the following communication:-
“The King commands me to assure you of the true sympathy of His Majesty and the Queen in your sorrow.
Mr. and Mrs. Clayton, to whom the sincere sympathy of the whole town is extended have two other sons, who are also serving their King and country, viz., Privates Frank Clayton and John Sanders, who are half-brothers.
Frank enlisted in his deceased brother’s regiment, the 2nd Suffolks, just before Whitsuntide, and is at present stationed at Felixstowe. Private John Sanders recently joined Lord Kitchener’s army, and is in training at Shoreham. In a letter to his mother he thanked her for a pudding she had sent him, and says that they are having salmon for tea and sardines for breakfast.
Note: His half brother Walter H Clayton