Chapman MM, Harold

Hull Pals Memorial Post. PRIVATE, HAROLD CHAPMAN MM 11/105. Born in 1896 in Huddersfield, Harold was the son of Thomas and Emma Chapman of 6 Willow Grove, Somerset Street, Hull. A Bottler before the war he worked for Messrs, H Wilson & Son, Saville Street, Hull. He enlisted at City Hall on 7th September 1914 joining the 11th Battalion East Yorkshire Regiment, ‘The Tradesmen’, 2nd Hull Pals. Before leaving for Egypt, where the Pals shipped to help defend the Suez Canal from the Turkish Army, Harold got married. The Reverend WB Reynold’s presided over the ceremony at St. Matthew’s on 2nd August 1915, and Harold wed Beatrice May. Their time together was short. Harold was killed in action having volunteered for a raiding party which got caught up in the German barbed wire on 20th July 1916. In a letter of condolence to his mother, Harold’s Captain told her: “He could not have felt any pain. We carried him back to our trenches where he breathed his last.”
This is perhaps a little white lie, for Harold was shot in the head and if he lived long enough to be carried back across No-Man’s Land, must have been in great pain. His Captain though was a good man. He went on: “I had your boy with me when he first joined, and it was always a pleasure to see his bright fresh face. Last evening in the march down a country lane I had a little chat with him. He seemed so bright, but thought that he would not come back, so he said. But he did not seem to mind. I can assure you it is a great sorrow to me to lose him. He was full of pluck, and always such a steady boy. His end is most deeply regretted by his comrades and his officers.”
Harold is buried at Rue-du-Bacquerot No.1 Military Cemetery, France; he was 20 years old. His death was reported in the Hull daily Mail, on 28/07/1916. *

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Rue-du-Bacquerot No.1 Military Cemetery, France