The German Spring Offensive, March-July 1918
Defence of Hinges. The 1st Battalion, Royal Scots Fusiliers watching the 7th Battalion, King's Shropshire Light Infantry marching up to the outpost line, 3rd Division, 11 April 1918. John Warwick Brooke [Public domain]
Private Vince Greenwood was the son of Hartley and Hannah Greenwood of Nelson and husband of Lois Greenwood of 206 Chapelhouse Rd., Nelson.
On the 1911 census, he is recorded as living at 30 Garden St., Nelson, and working as a cotton weaver at Holt and Sons, Vale St. Mills, Nelson, age 26.
He was formerly a member of the Liberal Club and was on the Liberal Committee of the Walverden Ward.
Private Greenwood joined the army, leaving his wife and child, on September 20th 1916 and was drafted out to Salonika in January 1917 with A Coy., 8th Bn., Kings Shropshire Light Infantry.
He was killed in Salonika on 15th April 1918. He was 33 years old.
Private Greenwood is buried Karasouli Military Cemetery, Greece, F.1337, and remembered on the headstone of the family grave. Plot A.250 in St John's Churchyard
He was awarded the Victory Medal.
The following letters were received on his death:
April 24th 1918
Dear Madam, I, on behalf of the platoon to which your dear husband belonged, wish to convey to you our deepest sympathy in your great loss. We received a great shock when we knew he had met his death instantly by a shell whilst carrying out his duty in the trenches. I can assure you he will be missed by his platoon. He proved himself to be a good and sociable comrade during his time with the battalion. He was buried in a British military cemetery by a C.of E. padre in the presence of an officer and as many comrades as were able to attend. On behalf of his comrades, I remain, your truly J. UNWIN.
April 23rd, 1918
Dear Mrs. Greenwood, - I am writing to offer you my very deep and heartfelt sympathy in your loss. You will have heard, I expect, from the War Office, that Pte. Vince Greenwood was killed in action on April 15th. He was killed by the explosion of a trench mortar shell, killed instantly, so the poor boy did not suffer. I feel that in a way it is an impertinence for me to intrude upon your grief, but I thought it would be some comfort to you to be assured of the very deep sympathy of his battalion to you. I buried him on the night of the 16th of April in the Horse Shoe British Military Cemetery. In a few days a cross will be erected over his grave.
He died in the Eastertide season, and I thought as I read those words over him, 'In sure and certain resurrection to eternal life,' that it would have been a great comfort to his people who loved him to have heard them. May he rest in peace until that day when he will rise again. God help and comfort you in your loss is the prayer of yours, sympathetically, (Rev.) LEONARD STOKES, Chaplain.
May 5th, 1918
Dear Mrs Greenwood, - Begging forgiveness for the delay in writing to you, I now take the opportunity of extending to you my heartfelt sympathy in the irreparable loss you have sustained by your sad bereavement. God alone can know your grief, for officers and men alike have lost in your husband a loyal and faithful comrade, and as words could never portray the true sentiments of our hearts in our impotence we realise we cannot do better than commend you to the grace and comfort of our Heavenly Father, Who alone healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds (Psalm 147, 3). When the sad news reached me, the whole world seemed to lose its sunshine, and all was gloom and darkness; but thanks be unto God the hallowed memories of his character draws aside the veil, and along with you dear ones, we find consolation in the glorious hope of a heavenly reunion. There is a chain death can never sever, for love and remembrance last for ever.
No one who knew him need ever be told, A warmer heart death never made cold,
For cheery ways and smiling face, There?s none can fill our comrade?s place.
Your loss, and also our's, will be his gain, and heaven will be richer for his presence; and so in bringing this humble message to a close in Christian sympathy, I would ask you to comply with what I think would be his greatest wish, and that is, meet him at the Fountain. On behalf of all the boys, PTE. WM. ATKINSON.
Commonwealth War Graves Commission Soldiers Died in The Great War 1914-1919 Part 55
The King's Shropshire Light Infantry 8th Battalion
The Colne and Nelson Times, (Friday May 31, 1918, page 3, column 5)
The Nelson Leader ( Friday May 24, 1918, page 2, column 7)
Memorial Plaque Vince Greenwood
Silk Book Mark