Private George Herbert Smith, 9th Company, Machine Gun Corps, died on 10th May 1917, aged 20. He was born in Marston Green and was the second of the five children (three sons, two daughters) of parents James (a railway plate layer) and Florence Mary (née Harvey) who had married at Bickenhill in 1894. Two of their three sons were killed during the First World War – the youngest, Sydney Harvey (1911-1997) was too young to serve in the war.
By 1911, the family was living in Bradnock’s Marsh, and 14-year-old George was working as a farm labourer. We don’t know when he joined the Army, as his service record doesn’t appear to have survived. It seems he first joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment, before being transferred to the Machine Gun Corps (Infantry).
He was killed in action on 10th May 1917 and, having no known grave, is commemorated on the Arras Memorial. He is also commemorated locally on war memorials at Marston Green and Bickenhill. His older brother, James Enoch, served as a Private with the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and was killed in action on 25th July 1916.
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