Between January and March, 1875, Patrick Joseph Bradley married Catherine Muldowney in a civil ceremony at Stockport. The pair were Roman Catholics and, at that time, marriages could not be conducted in Catholic churches.
In 1877, John James Bradley was born and would be known as Jack to his family and friends. Eleven years later, his brother Luke was born. No doubt there were other brothers and sisters.
Like the other members of his family, Jack attended St Philip and St James Church in Edgeley. He had worked in the Permanent Way Department of the London and North Western Railway Ltd. More recently, he had been employed by Stockport Corporation Tramways Department.
By the time of the Great War, John was married and lived with his wife and six children at 12 Wood Street, Stockport. Within days of war being declared on 4 August 1914, Jack had left his family and enlisted into the army.
The local newspaper reported his date of death as 19 August, but the Commonwealth War Graves Commission has it as the 17th and this is presumed to be more accurate. The Battalion's War Diary records that the Cheshires were in trenches at Lindenhoek, about 13 kilometres south of the town centre of Ypres). There was some shelling with rifle grenades during the morning which resulted in some casualties but this is not how Jack died. A comrade later wrote to Mrs Bradley "Poor Jack. I somehow can't forget it. You must understand we had a thunderstorm and the trenches were flooded with water. We went over the top to see if we could find a place to run it off and, whilst working, a sniper got him in the head." The sniper had already killed Joseph Clarke two days before. It may have been the same German soldier who would also kill Thomas Morton on 7 September.