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Private (Ernest) Rennie Leeding

25761 2nd Battalion Bedfordshire Regiment
(attached to 9th Bn Essex Regt.)

Son of Mr Sanders & Mrs Lydia Louisa Leeding

Aged 20 years

Died 12th August 1916

Commemorated on Thiepval Memorial
Pier & Face 2C.

Born and enlisted at Rushden. Brother of Second A.M. George Oscar Leeding
The Rushden Echo Friday 22 September 1916, transcribed by Nicky Bates

Rushden Soldier Missing - Pte Rennie Leeding - A Student for the Ministry

Pte E Rennie Leeding, 25761, Essex Regiment, son of Mr and Mrs Sanders Leeding, of 27 Wentworth-road, Rushden, has, we regret to say, been officially reported missing as from August 12th. The first intimation his parents received that anything was amiss was when a parcel they addressed to him returned marked "Present location unknown."

The official news that he was missing was received at the end of last week. The last letter they received from him was dated August 9th and was received August 12th. Pte Leeding enlisted in the Beds Regt. in January this year, being called up with his group. He was sent to France in May, and subsequently was attached to the Essex Regiment. Prior to enlistment he was studying with a view of entering the ministry. His parents are feeling much anxiety concerning their son's fate, and will be extremely grateful to any of his comrades who can send them any further information.

The Wellingborough News Friday 6 October 1916, transcribed by Nicky Bates

Rushden Officer Missing

News has been received that 2nd Lieut E Rennie Leeding, son of Mr Sanders Leeding of Rushden, is missing and reported killed. The officer joined up in January and went to France in May with the Bedfords as a private. He won the cross guns in training. He was 20 years of age, and was a theological student previous to enlisting in the Army, intending to enter the Baptist Ministry. His father has heard nothing of his son since August 12th, when he 'went over' the trenches and never returned. The first intimation that his son had received his commission was the notice recording the fact that the officer was missing. Any information regarding the gallant lad's fate will be gratefully received by his anxious parents.

The Rushden Echo Friday 4 April 1919, transcribed by Nicky Bates

Rushden Soldier's Fate - Pte E R Leeding Presumed Killed

Mr S Leeding, of Rushden, insurance agent, has received the following letter from the Red Cross, regarding the fate of his son, Pte E Rennie Leeding, 25761, 10th Platoon, 9th Essex Regiment, attd, from the 2nd Bedfordshire Regiment:- Dear Sir, - We deeply regret to tell you that in spite of many inquires we have failed to obtain any further information respecting your son. As he was reported wounded in the head, it very natural that you should fear he might be in some hospital, suffering from loss of memory, and unable to say who he is. We are glad to tell you that there are not many cases of this kind, and also that the War Office has recently sent us a word that up to the present, all soldiers and repatriated prisoners suffering mentally have been identified, so if Rennie were thus afflicted you would have been informed of his condition. As it is more than two years since he was last seen or heard of, we are becoming very anxious as to his fate. Everything points to the conclusion that this promising young soldier must have been hit a second time, and lost his life, on his way back to the dressing station. It must be some consolation to you to know that had he lived, he would have been given a commission, which shows how highly he was thought of by the officers of his regiment. We should like once more to offer you our heartfelt sympathy in your long anxiety and trouble. Yours faithfully for M.C., the Earl of Lucan.

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