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The Channel Islands and the Great War
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Le Cras, R C

Wancourt British Cemetery

Wancourt British Cemetery, near Arras

Notice of Death appears in Jersey Evening Post of Wednesday 13 June 1917

Commemorated on St Paul's School Memorial, Jersey
St Paul's Church Memorial, Jersey
Victoria Street Congregational Church Memorial, Jersey

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Wednesday 12 May 1915

Gallant Jersey Lad Wounded. The many local friends of Rifleman Reg Le Cras who enlisted in the 1st Battalion Rifle Brigade soon after the outbreak of war, and who has been in the heavy fighting at Neuve Chapelle, will regret to hear that he has received several wounds in the recent fighting at Hill 60. As will be seen from the following cheerful letter he hopes to rapidly recover and obtain brief leave to visit the "old folk". He writes to his mother as follows "I suppose you have been wondering why I have not written before, but so much has happened since I last wrote that I hardly know what to tell you. To start, we were on rest enjoying it very much, holiday, sports etc. when the tip came to get ready to move off at a moments notice. The following morning found us on our way to the railway station and after a few hours run we landed at another part of the firing line. About 6 o'clock we came to a halt in a field where we slept for the night. There was a cold wind blowing and to make matters worse it came on to rain so you can guess how we spent the night. Luckily our Field Kitchens and transport came up in time to give us a nice cup of warm tea before we started on the march again. Later in the day we came to a French town and about 6 in the evening we started to the trenches - it makes me shudder to think of the march. I cannot tell you all we saw and what happened to us until we reached the trenches, but thank God we got there with only a few casualties in our Company, but the other companies suffered a good deal. The next morning the Germans had a surprise in finding the British in the trenches and their artillery let us have a terribly hot time with their shells for a couple of days. We had no dug-outs just the open trench so got to stick it." It continues "Dear Mother, I wrote the above letter while in the trenches but could not post it as I got wounded, so I am dropping you a line not for you to be anxious. I have been wounded in six places with shrapnel and had a bullet in the leg so am leaving today for the Base where they are going to extract the bullet. I hope this time to be able to come home. Our men are getting a terrible time but they are sticking it well. Will the Germans continue to use their poisonous gas? There are lots of bad cases here with it. I should like to write more but my wrist is stiff so don't worry. Your loving son, REG"

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Monday 25 September 1916

Jersey Soldier Wounded. We regret to hear that Lance Corporal R Le Cras of the Rifle Brigade has been severely wounded in the thigh and leg during the recent fighting. This gallant lad, who belonged to the St Pauls Troop of Boy Scouts went out to the war shortly after the commencement of hostilities and was severely wounded at Hill 60. He is now lying in hospital at Exeter.


Commonwealth War Graves Commission Record


Reginald Clifford Le Cras

Lance-Sergeant Reginald Clifford Le Cras
13th Battalion, Rifle Brigade

1914 Star

Son of Rosa Alice Le Cras, of 7, Wordsworth St., Hove, Brighton, Sussex. Born at St. Helier, Jersey.

Killed in action, aged 20 years.

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Wednesday 13 June 1917

Roll of Honour. The many friends and acquaintances of Sergeant Reg Le Cras of the Rifle Brigade will regret to learn that the loyal young soldier made the supreme sacrifice in France on 31 May last. Reg, as he was generally known, was in his 19th year and was a former leader in St Pauls Troop of Boy Scouts. Being keen on doing his bit he enlisted shortly after the outbreak of war, though he had not then reached the regulation age. He proceeded to France where he was wounded and after spending a brief leave in the Island returned to France a few weeks ago. He proved himself to be a most reliable and efficient soldier and as will be seen had been promoted Sergeant. The sad event was conveyed to his mother, who now resides in Brighton, by a comrade who was with him at the time. He states "I offer you my deepest sympathy and that of all the chaps of the Platoon who were all very sorry indeed when they heard of his death. He was liked and respected by everybody in the Company and he was always cheerful in the face of any danger. He was talking to an officer in the trench and the shell exploded killing them both instantly". We tender the bereaved mother and family our sincere sympathy.

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Monday 2 July 1917

The Late Sergeant Reg Le Cras. The usual monthly Church Parade of 5th Jersey (St Pauls) Troop Boy Scouts took place at St Pauls Church last evening. The Reverend A Poynder was the preacher and at the close of his address he stated that this was the first Scouts Church Parade since the death in action of Sergeant Reg Le Cras of the Rifle Brigade, the latter was a former member of St Pauls Day and Sunday Schools and of the Troop of Boy Scouts. Reg had heard the call and was ready to serve his God, and whilst doing so, his King and Country, his example should always teach us to live as God would have us live, always ready to obey and ready to serve.


Pictures courtesy of Mike & Rosemarie Thomas