John Thomas LONGDEN
Rank: Corporal
Number: 4685
Unit: C Battery, 119th Brigade ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
Date of Death: 4 December 1920
Age: 44
Cemetery: Stockport Borough Cemetery

Nothing is known of John’s early life, except that he is understood to have been born in Macclesfield. He was probably still living in the area when, in 1898, he married Amanda Sherratt at St George’s Church, Sutton. but, by 1901, they had moved to live in Edgeley. The couple had a child, Ellen, who was aged 1.

John was blacksmith by trade and it is, perhaps, no surprise that when he joined the army it was a Shoeing Smith. It was a vital job in an artillery brigade to ensure that the horses were properly shod. His is an early service number and he was, almost certainly, an original member of the brigade which went overseas at the end of 1915.

His death is, of course, two years after the end of hostilities but his commemoration by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission confirms, in itself, that the cause of his death was related to his War service. It is not known if this was due to wounds he’d received or an illness contracted whilst a soldier.

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