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Private Alfred Gross

22580 6th Battalion The Buffs (East Kent Regiment)

Son of Mr Henry & Mrs Lucy Ann Gross
Husband of Ethel Maud

Aged 38 years

Died 12th August 1918

Commemorated at Pernois British Cemetery
Grave IV. B.1


Born at Rushden, enlisted and resided at Northampton.
Rushden Echo, August 23rd, 1918, transcribed by Greville Watson

Rushden’s Casualty List - Local Victims of the War

Pte. Alfred Gross, of the Buffs, husband of Mrs Gross, of Station-road, Cogenhoe, and third (and youngest) son of Mr and Mrs Henry Gross, of 23, Wentworth-road, Rushden, has, we regret to say, died of wounds on August 12th.  Deceased had previously suffered from poison gas, and returned to the front directly after Christmas last.  He was wounded on August 9th, and underwent an operation, but soon after regaining consciousness he passed away.  Aged 38 years, he was a native of Rushden, and his name appears on the Roll of Honour connected with the Park-road Wesleyan Church.  He went through the Sunday School of that place of worship.  By trade he was a hand-stitcher, and at one time he worked at the Bespoke Boot Works at Rushden, but about six years ago entered the employ of Messrs. T. C. Mann and Son, of Cogenhoe.  As recently as August 8th deceased wrote to his wife and said he hoped to be home for the third anniversary of their wedding (Rushden Feast time), and he must have received the fatal wounds not many hours after writing the letter, as he was at the Casualty Clearing Station on August 9th.  At the hospital he was visited by the Rev. J. P. Frend, the Chaplain, who, by a strange coincidence, was to have officiated at the wedding of Mr and Mrs Gross three years ago, but was unable to conduct the ceremony as he was called to France before the date fixed upon for the wedding.  Mr Frend visited the patient as often as he could; he was with him at 7.30 on Monday night, August 12th, but before 9 p.m. the deceased had passed away.  He was buried the next day in the cemetery, and, as a matter of fact, the funeral had taken place before his wife knew that he had been injured.  Deceased was a member of the Rushden Lodge of Free Gardeners.  Some time before his death he had a weird experience.  Going up the trenches he turned to speak to his pal, who was apparently standing there, and then found his chum had been killed by a trench mortar as he stood.  The late Pte. Gross joined the Forces in March last year.  A brother of the deceased soldier, Pte. James Gross, is serving in the Royal Naval Sick Berth Reserve.  The bereaved widow has one brother serving – Pte. C. Webster – who was near his brother-in-law at the time of the latter’s death, but did not have the opportunity of seeing him.  Deceased’s parents (Mr and Mrs H. Gross) have three sons-in-law serving – Saddler William Todd, A.S.C.., who is at Southampton, Pte. Eddie Hodgkins, who is at Clacton-on-Sea, and Pte. B. H. Waller, who is in France.  The Rev. J. P. Frend sent several letters to Mrs Alfred Gross, at Cogenhoe, stating how her husband was going on, and the letter (dated August 13th) in which he gave the sad information that her husband had passed away was as follows: “Dear Mrs Gross,––I cannot tell you how grieved I am to write that your husband died last evening.  I went in to see him at 7 p.m. and found him quite comfortable, but when I went again at 9.30 p.m. he had just passed away.  He seems to have quite suddenly collapsed.  I have just come back from the funeral in our cemetery this morning.  I am so very sorry for you and all his family and friends.  I know only too well what a very great blank it means in your life and how difficult it will be for you to realise that he will not come home to you, but you will one day go to him and you must wait patiently till then.  I am getting a special cross made for his grave, and will beg for some flowers from the village to plant on it.  Perhaps you would like to send me a few bulbs later on, which I can plant in the autumn and they will come into flower next Easter-time.  Our cemetery here is going to be a very beautiful spot, and is very nicely kept; you have the satisfaction of knowing that.  My boy’s grave has never been found, though I hope to go and look for it when the Germans have been driven out of the place where he lies.  Write to me and tell me what I can do for you.  God bless and comfort you.”

The Wellingborough News Friday 30 August 1918, transcribed by Nicky Bates

Rushden Lad Makes the Great Sacrifice

We also regret to report that Pte Alfred Gross, "The Buffs," husband of Mrs Gross, of Station-road, Cogenhoe, and youngest son of Mr and Mrs H Gross, of 23, Wentworth-road, Rushden, died of wounds on August 12th. Pte Gross, was 38 years of age, and joined the Forces in March, 1917.

The Rushden Echo Friday 13 August 1920, transcribed by Nicky Bates

In Memoriam

GROSS - In loving memory of Alfred Gross, dearly beloved husband of Ethel Gross, Cogenhoe, who died of wounds, in France, August 12th, 1918.

Forget him, no, I never will,
I loved him in life, 1 love him still;
From memory's page I never blot.
Three little words - "Forget him not."

From his loving wife.

GROSS - In ever loving memory of our dear son and brother, Alfred Gross, who fell while fighting for his country, on August 12th, 1918.

'Tis sweet to think we shall meet again
When all our partings are o'er,
Our dear one, whom we loved so well,
Has only gone before.

From his ever loving mother, father, sisters and brothers, 23 Wentworth-road, Rushden.


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