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martinJames Martin was the son of John and Eliza Martin. In 1901 they were living at 15 Edge Street, Sedgley with his sister, Priscilla. By 1911 they were at 6 Harding Street, Coseley, and James had become a boat loader. On 19 May 1912 he married Alice Lucy Thompson, and they went on to have three children, although I have only been able to find the registration for Lily May, in 1912. He later lived at Daisy Bank, Bilston, and worked at the Spring Vale Works.

James enlisted in the 2nd Battalion of the South Staffordshire Regiment (number 12963) in September 1914, first serving in France on 23 March 1915. He was initially reported as missing but, according to the Express & Star article 21 September 1915, it was later confirmed that he was killed in action on 16 May 1915. The article reports the tragedy that he had not yet met the youngest of his three children, “a baby the wife carries in arms.” He is commemorated on the Le Touret Memorial. It is likely that he is also the “J. Martin” listed on the Dudley Town Memorial.

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