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Battle of Ypres war hero William Ford

The Story of a brave soldier in second battle of Ypres 1915, William Ford, joined the Northamptonshire Regiment in 1915 and went to war..

It was the battle of Ypres 1915. The trenches and dugouts stretched as far as the eye can see, like a maze of organized spaghetti. Omnipresent gunfire rang in the air, the smell of powder, thick clay and damp clung to the inside of the soldiers nostrils. Lieutenant William Ford took the initiative to vault the trench and make his move. He was making good progress into enemy territory and out of nowhere came a loud crack and a shot whizzed through the battle smog and ripped through his webbing belt and his stomach, stopping him in his tracks.

The Second Battle of Ypres 1915 (image provided by wikipedia)

The Second Battle of Ypres 1915 (image provided by Wikipedia)

He fell into the mud, amongst the other downed soldiers. Still alive but bleeding badly he crawled out of sight of the gunfire and waited for his next move. A fearsome sound caught his attention and for a moment drew his mind away from his agony. He heard footsteps in the squelching mud close by and pistol fire of a German officer systematically walking from one downed soldier to the next, shooting the wounded and dying. He lay still, closed his eyes and feigned death not breathing for fear of being discovered and shot. The footsteps passed by!

William Ford Battle of Ypres aged 16

William Ford Battle of Ypres aged 16

During that night a British patrol came by with stretchers looking for the wounded.

Stretcher Bares Ypres. image credit www.1914.org

William managed a feeble groan and the party spotted him. He was rushed off the battle field and his wounds were dressed and patched and in due course he recovered and was sent home.

Soon after the war, William now Sergeant, was sent with his Northamptonshire regiment to Ireland in Dublin to help keep the peace. During his service in Ireland he met a lady and who was desperate to get out of Ireland and the prospect of marrying a Sergeant soon became good friends. William was allowed to court this lady as long he didn’t wear his uniform and he visited through the back door. He survived yet another crisis. Through out the following years he climbed the ranks to Company Sergent Major and served in both India and the Andaman Islands but was sent home with family in 1939.

William Ford was then recalled for action once more in the Second World War. His contribution to the Second World War was a step back from his previous encounters in the front lines but still and important part of the war effort, training the new recruits throughout the 1940’s. At this time he had progressed through the ranks to Major, he eventually and died around 1971 aged 73. A true man of British grit!

William Ford Born 1898.

Family History Magazine Free Restoration

News: I have teamed up with Your Family History Magazine to bring a FREE photo restoration to one lucky person.

Free Photo Restoration by Image-Restore.co.uk in conjunction with Your Family History Magazine

Free Photo Restoration by Image-Restore.co.uk in conjunction with Your Family History Magazine

Only one day left to email them your old photo at subscripitons@your-familyhistory.com images must be in by 4th of October 2011. If you wish to read a guide on scanning your photos to ensure we give you the best restoration see scanning for photo restoration. Your photo will feature in the magazine too!

Update: 09/10/2011

The winner has now been chosen and the image restored, it should be in the December 2011 Edition of Your Family History Magazine

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