Fredrick William TURNER
Rank: Driver
Number: 91904
Unit: 7th Division Ammunition Column ROYAL FIELD ARTILLERY
Date of Death: 24 October 1914
Age: 40
Cemetery: Northwood Cemetery, Cower, Isle of Wight

Nothing is known of Frederick’s early life until 1910 when, in that year, he married Edith Price at Trinity Methodist Church, Wellington Road, Stockport. They are thought to have set up home together at 46 Grimshaw Street.

The local press reported that Frederick had enlisted into the army in August 1914. However, it then went to say that he had been invalided home after the Battle of Mons on 23 August. Even then, basic training for a soldier took several weeks and it is all but impossible that he could have joined after War was declared on 4 August and have been in action three weeks later. All soldiers who served abroad were entitled to campaign medals and a summary of their entitlement is available on the website of the National Archives. No record has been found for Frederick and the conclusion must be that he never saw action.

It is almost certain that he was still in training when he was taken ill and admitted to Fawcett Road Hospital in Portsmouth. He was later transferred to Northwood Hospital in Cowes where he died of “haemorrhage following bronchitis”.

The Army would pay for funerals near to where a man died in the UK but, if relatives wanted to bring his body home, they would have to pay themselves. Edith probably could not afford the cost of bringing Frederick back to Stockport but she travelled to Cowes with her sister. He was buried with full military honours. The coffin was brought to the Cemetery on a gun carriage and was covered with the Union Jack. Three volleys were fired over his grave and a bugler sounded the “Last Post”.

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