George Clarence Knowles (Du. 1914-15)


Second Lieutenant, Yorkshire Regiment
Born: July 31st 1897
Died: June 10th 1917

Age at Death: 19

Died of Wounds, Messines, France , June 10th 1917.
Son of Louis Knowles.

A donation to the memorial statue has been made in honour of this soldier by Soady Family:

"You did make a difference. Thank you."

Obituary Brightonian XV July, 1917
G.C. Knowles entered Durnford House in January, 1914; was made House Prefect in 1915. He passed the London Matriculation while at the College, and entered Sandhurst at Easter, 1916. He did very well at Sandhurst and was gazetted to the 3rd Battalion Yorkshire Regiment. He went to France, attached to the 9th Battalion, and quickly earned a reputation which his gallant death nobly justified. His father has very kindly sent us copied of many letters from officers and others who knew him.  We venture to quote an extract from one which gives a detailed account of how he died: "In difficult times in trenches and when at rest behind the lines he was always doing something for the care of his platoon, and his boldness and absolute disregard of danger when in action was superb. You will be glad to know he died the most glorious death imaginable. He was bringing in one of his men from the open (the man had been badly wounded) when he was shot through the arm and fell. He got up again and tried to drag the man in, when he was shot through the shoulder. After a few minutes he once again tried to drag in the wounded man, when he received a bullet in the abdomen."  A senior officer writes: - "Your son was one of the best and most gallant fellows it has ever been my privilege to meet; we all loved him and his loss will be keenly felt. He died, as he would have wished to die, from wounds received in the attempt to save the life of one of his men, an attempt in which he was successful."

2nd Lieutenant George Clarence Knowles
George Knowles was born in Wood Green, Middlesex on July 31st 1897. He was the third child and only son of Louis Knowles, a chemist, and his wife Annie (nee Brailsford). At the College he passed the matriculation exam for London University but before going there completed officer training at Sandhurst and received a commission in the 9th Battalion, Yorkshire Regiment. The battalion formed part of the 23rd Division, which took part in the assault on the Messines Ridge in June 1917 during which Knowles sustained the wounds which led to his death. His grave is in the Lijssenthoek Military Cemetry, Ypres, Belgium.

Source: LEST WE FORGET PROJECT, Brighton College 2014/15

 

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