|The Rushden Echo Friday 26 March 1915,transcribed by Nicky Bates
Rushden Soldier Killed - Lance-Corpl Arthur Millard - Falls a Victim at Neuve Chapelle - Sad News Sent to 'The Rushden Echo'
The Editor of "The Rushden Echo" has received an intimation of the death of Lance-Corpl. Arthur Millard (Rushden), C Company, 2nd Northants Regt., in the following letter from 7914, Pte F Mams, 2nd Northamptons, who is now in the Crumpsall Institution Infirmary, Manchester:-
"To the Editor of "The Rushden Echo." Sir, - I am very sorry to have to trouble you regarding the death of No. 6064, Lance-Corpl. Arthur Millard, of the 2nd Northamptonshire Regiment. It is the only way I could think of to get the brief news to his wife. He was shot in the stomach and died instantly on March 10th at Neuve Chapelle and the next morning being a great friend of his, both in India and in France, I went and found him dead, and I took all his letters, thinking I would find his address, but failed. Knowing he came from Rushden, I thought I would write to the local paper. You must excuse my handwriting, as I have got wounded in the hand. I have sent his wife's photo, which was in his letters."
Lance-Corpl. Millard was, as a youth, a scholar in the Park-road Wesleyan Sunday School at Rushden, and was on the roll of honour connected with the Wesleyan Church. The Rev. R Heaps, minister, has written to all the soldiers connected with the Wesleyan Church, including Lance-Corpl. Millard. Mr Heaps received a letter from another friend of Lance-Corpl. Millard's namely Pte W. A. Goddard, 9174, C Company, 2nd Northants Regt., now with the British Expeditionary Force. Pte Goddard's letter was follows:- "March 17, 1915. Dear Mr Heaps, - I am sorry to inform you that Corpl. A Millard was killed in action on March 10th. No doubt you read about the great battle which was fought by the British. Corpl. Millard happened to leave me your letters before he went into action, so I have taken the trouble to let you know, which is a very hard thing, because he was very much liked by us all."
The Rev. R and Mrs Heaps gently broke the sad news to Mrs Millard, who lives at No. 50 Washbrook-road, but who is working for Mr and Mrs Fred Corby at the Beeches, Higham-road, and it was there that they found her. A sad feature in connection with the painful event is the fact that Mrs Millard herself has been ill and was for over four weeks at the Northampton Hospital. When she came out of the hospital she had her photograph taken, to show her husband how favourably she had progressed, and it was this photograph which Pte Mains took from the body of Lance-Corpl. Millard and forwarded to the Editor of the "Rushden Echo", who had handed it back to Mrs Millard.
Deceased, who was 31 years of age, and was a reservist, had only one year to serve before being time-expired. He had served ten years in India, and also went through the South African War.
A pathetic incident in connection with Lance-Corpl. Millard's death is the fact that it was on the second anniversary of their marriage that Mrs Millard was informed that her husband had been killed. Lance-Corpl. Millard was, we believe, a native of Higham Ferrers. His mother died last year, and his father (Mr Eli Millard) resides in Cromwell-road, Rushden. Deceased's wife was a native of Cornwall.
The deceased soldier had the offer of promotion to the position of sergeant, but he refused, preferring to retain the lower rank. Before he was called up to the front he worked for Messrs. James Hyde, Ltd, boot manufacturers, of Rushden.