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The following story has been told by Mark Cooper, the grandson of Bertie Crick:

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Bertie CRICK, my grandad on my mothers side, was born in Wolverhampton on 13th April 1890 at 19 Shepherd Street. His father was John Henry CRICK, a journeyman Baker from Northampton. His mother, Bertha Elizabeth Crick formally Cruden, all lived as a family in Shepherd Street too. Bertie married my grandmother, Edith Sarah Meek a Laundress, in Walsall at the parish church in Caldmore, on 26th December 1913.They lived in 32 Orlando Street, Caldmore, Walsall. Bertie became a Caster in the local foundry industry.  On 24th November 1916, Edith gave birth to my mother, Dorothy Maud Crick.

In 1914, the Great War was announced and like many young men who joined up in response to the “call”, Bertie was just one of them. He enlisted with the 7th Battalion, South Staffs Regiment, in Lichfield on 15th August 1914 aged just 24 years and was given the service number 9362 and posted to France. On the 24th February 1917 he was made Corporal. His medals included the 1914/15 Star, the British War Medal 1914/18 and the Victory Medal.He served in the Mediterranean  Expeditionary Force from 15th August   1915 to 28th June  1916, and in the British Expeditionary Force from 28th June 1916 to 17th July 1917.

In 1917, Bertie found himself attacking a hill position at Passchendaele, where he was tragically killed in action by German forces on the ridges on 17 July 1917. He is remembered with honour and is buried at La Brique Military Cemetery No2 . I visited his grave some years back and hope to be there in 2017 for the Centenary on July 17th 2017. Edith remarried Sgt Joseph Booth Gretton who also served in the second Boer War and WW1, and had children Winifred, Lilian, John & Jack Gretton, my uncle. All married serving soldiers, Jack Gretton was posted to Burma with the Chinditz in 1944/45, receiving the Burma Star medal.

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