'Your bravery will always be remembered': Northampton woman pays tribute to relatives who fought in First World War

Company Sergeant Major Thomas Civil (left), Augustine Edward Pynn (top) and Private Walter William Pearson (bottom)
Company Sergeant Major Thomas Civil (left), Augustine Edward Pynn (top) and Private Walter William Pearson (bottom)

Three members of a Northampton woman's family fought in the First World War both on French and Turkish battlefields.

Ahead of Armistice Day 100 this Sunday, Helen Frost researched her great-great uncles and great-grandfather in an effort to find out more on their involvement in the Great War.

One of the three men, Acting Company Sergeant Major Thomas Civil, did not make it home, dying age 25 in the Battle of Aubers Ridge on May 9, 1915, fighting with the Northamptonshire Regiment.

"I feel both immensely sad yet proud to commemorate who our family know affectionately as ‘Tom’ on the centenary of the Armistice," said Helen.

"Your individual bravery and selfless sacrifice, along with your comrades will always be remembered."

CSM Civil was born in Northampton and joined the Northamptonshire Regiment aged 19, winning promotion through his high character and capabilities.

He is commemorated at Le Touret Memorial in France; he has no grave.

Private Walter William Pearson, Helen's great-grandfather, survived the war after fighting in Gallipoli.

He sustained a serious eye injury while on the front line in the Dardanelles in Turkey, which eventually resulted in him losing his right eye.

Private Pearson enlisted aged 15 in 1912 and was part of 4th Northamptonshire Regiment at the outbreak of the war.

After his eye injury, he was transferred to the Labour Corps and was sent to the front in France on September 9, 1916.

He was discharged on April 6, 1919.

Augustine Edward Pynn, another of Helen's great-great uncles, also survived the war.

Born in Weedon in 1898, he joined the Royal Warwickshire Regiment and fought in the trenches in France.

In the November 1915 edition of the Weedon Deanery Parish Magazine, Mr Pynn is listed as one of 43 Weedon men who wrote to the magazine to both thank and acknowledge receipt of parcels sent to them at the front.