Wednesday, 6 August 2014

F H Passmore

Frederick Herbert Passmore
Born 1888 in Plaistow, London  Killed in Action 1 May 1918
Buried Nine Elms British Cemetery, Belgium
Lance Corporal 80803 Royal Army Medical Corps  Enlisted Newquay 30 October 1915

Frederick was the son of Frederick Thomas Passmore and Florence Louisa Parr.  The couple married in 1882 in Bristol.  Frederick Snr was a pastor, working as a city missionary in London during his son's childhood.

The couple had four children, one of whom died in infancy.  The three surviving children were:

Edith Miriam b. 1884
Frederick Herbert
Dorothy Winifred b. 1900

By 1911, Mrs Passmore and Dorothy were living in Golf Terrace, Newquay.  Frederick Senior was visiting in Devon at the time of the census.  Frederick Herbert had found work in Bristol as an assistant chemist.  He must have moved back to Newquay by 1915 since that was the year he made two important decisions and both record him as living in Newquay.

Frederick had met Helena Maud Irons, a young woman born, like him, in 1888.  Helena was the daughter of George and Eliza Irons, her father making his living as a master mariner.  Helena worked as a shop assistant and lived with her parents at Alma Place.  On 30 October 1915 Frederick and Helena married in the town and, on the same day, Frederick enlisted in the Royal Army Medical Corps.

Very little of Frederick's service records survive.  They do tell us that he was a small man, just 5 feet 3 1/2 inches tall, with a 33 1/2 inch chest.  The RAMC was probably delighted to have him; he was a registered dispenser and his records show that he passed his first aid course earning him an increment on the pay scale.  He was posted abroad on 31 July 1916.  No doubt he was needed, that being the first day of the Battle of the Somme.

Frederick's record shows that he was promoted to Lance Corporal on 27 December 1917.  This is confirmed by the Commonwealth Graves Commission Registration Reports, but he is shown as a Private on both the Roll of Honour and his gravestone.

The CWGC Registration Report shows that four other men of the 75th Field Ambulance died alongside Frederick on 1st May 1918.

His widow asked that his gravestone be inscribed with the words "The blood of Jesus Christ his son cleanseth us of all sin".

Helena appears not to have remarried and lived until 1968.

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