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Gerald was born in Hartlepool on 22 November 1897, the son of William and Eliza Jane Ibbs. By 1911, they were living at Andover Villa, Oxley Bank, Bushbury, along with Gerald’s siblings Arthur, Lilian, Richard and Geoffrey.

On 13 January 1914, Gerald joined the Royal Navy (number J29218), first serving on the HMS Impregnable. Gerald served on various ships throughout the war, until August 1919.

He married Harriet Emily Walters in Wolverhampton in 1925, and the couple had three children – Donald F. (1928), Cathleen H. E. (1930) and David R. (1933). Gerald died on 13 November 1960 at Four Ashes, Penkridge, by which date his address was 18 Market Lane, Lower Penn, Wolverhampton, The value of his effects was £465 10s. 8d.