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cattrollWilliam Edward Cattroll was born in Swansea in June 1899.

He enlisted into the Army on 11th May 1917 and joined the 48th Training Reserve Battalion a month later after he had turned 18 years old.  He had no military experience and had previously been employed as a motor driver. William elected his father, also named William Edward, of 78 Strand, Swansea, as his legal next of kin. His mother, Margaret Ann (nee Evans) had died sometime prior to 1911 and his father remarried a Margaret Burns (nee Price, also previously widowed) in 1913.

In December 1917 he joined the 25th Base Infantry Depot being temporarily posted into the 2/4th Battalion of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment for record purposes. William sailed from Folkstone to Boulogne on 1st April 1918 and four days later was transferred into the 9th Battalion joining them in the field.

Having been with the Battalion in France for just four days he sustained a gun shot wound to the abdomen on 9th April 1918. He was taken to No 20 General Hospital via 103 field ambulance, from where he sailed back to the UK on the Princess Elizabeth hospital ship on 10th May 1918.

princess-elisabethHS

Now back in the UK he underwent an operation to resection and repair his bowel. He was transferred into the 3rd (Reserve) Battalion in August.

William was finally discharged as permanently unfit due to his wounds on 1st November 1918 and was given Silver War Badge number B33915.

At the time of discharge the following notes were made on his record.

The shrapnel penetrated abdomen injuring small intestine. There is at present a definite state of ventral hernia and great sensitiveness to the touch in the neighbourhood of the scars. He finds the wearing of an abdominal belt intolerable without the buffer help of a wool wad.

His disability was considered, as expected, attributable to service during the war and the doctor assessed his present degree of disability was not ‘final’ but would likely last 12 months.

What isn’t noted on his papers, on anywhere for that matter*, is that William died the next month. He was 19 years old and was buried at Cwmgelly Cemetery in Swansea.

The Cambrian Daily Leader
FATAL WOUNDS
Swansea, Friday December 13, 1918.

The death has taken place of W. Catterall, of 21 Sebastopol-street, St Thomas, Swansea, late of the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment, as a result of wounds received in action. Deceased was only 19 years of age. His remains are being honoured with a military funeral, which takes place on Saturday, at Cwmgelly.

*William has not thus far been commemorated by the CWGC. I am pursuing this and hope that he will soon get the recognition he deserves.

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Paul McCormick

Paul McCormick is the creator and administrator for the Loyal North Lancashire Regiment website. Since 2010 he has been researching the soldiers that served during the First World War and sharing their stories on his website. You can contact Paul through the website 'Contact Me' page or on Twitter and Facebook.
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