Page last updated at 16:23 GMT, Friday, 7 November 2008

Headstone for soldier 80 years on

Dedication ceremony
School children and local people attended the dedication ceremony

The grave of a Lincolnshire soldier has been marked for the first time - 80 years after he died.

Pte Henry Vaughan, from Gainsborough, was injured at the battle of Loos in 1915 and returned home before dying three years later aged 29.

Research by Peter Bradshaw, assistant head teacher at Trent Valley Academy, showed he had died of war wounds and qualified for an official headstone.

It was dedicated in a ceremony at Gainsborough General Cemetery.

Pte Henry Vaughan joined the 5th Battalion of the Lincolnshire regiment, which suffered serious losses in the Battle of Loos in 1915.

Soldiers of Lincolnshire battalion
Pte Henry Vaughan could be in this group of Lincolnshire recruits
Efforts by Mr Bradshaw and some of his pupils to secure the memorial began when they found an article about Pte Vaughan's death in newspaper archives.

"But there was no mention of him in the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, so we tried to trace his service record and, very luckily, we found it.

"This showed he was involved in the Battle of Loos, but was brought back to England with neuritis, which was also called trench fever.

"We compared this with his death certificate, which also cited neuritis and if a soldier dies from the same wounds which forced them out of the army, they qualify for a War Graves Commission headstone."

Despite their efforts, Mr Bradshaw and his team could not trace a definite picture of Pte Vaughan or any of his relatives.

"We have a photograph of a group of soldiers from the battalion in 1915, so Henry might be in there.

"And the dedication of the gravestone was attended by some of the pupils and some townspeople, so since the local units often joined up together, it is likely some of their relatives fought with Henry Vaughan."



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