Read today's entry from Harry Gissing's 1914-18 war diaries

May 17, 1917

Approached the Major about time off to find out about Morris. He straight-way sent me to the A.P.M. in Bapaume to find out where the18th Battalion were. They could not tell me as they were on the move. On reporting this, the Major said he was sorry he could not spare me a car, but would give me any time off I required to find them. At 2 p.m.,therefore, I went by car to Bapaume, picked up a lorry near there, which dropped me in Albert. I then walked to Bellevue Farm where I found out that the 18th were at Senlis for the night, so I started off back having some tea and biscuits at the Y.M.C.A. in Albert for my tea.

After walking about six miles I found them and was fortunate in finding an old acquaintance as orderly room Sgt., and the Adjutant an old Ashfield boy, who gave me all the information I wanted. They told me he was shot through the head by a machine gun on the night of the 3rd, and that they had buried him not far from Noreil. All expressed the greatest sorrow at their loss, and also admiration for Morris himself. I spent the night there and set off home about 9 a.m. walking through Millencourt, near where I picked up a lorry which took me to Albert.

From there I managed to get to Le Sars, where I located Will Harris’s grave, a great friend of Morris. Near here I picked up a lorry to Bapaume and later an Ambulance in which I finished my journey, having covered in all about 36 miles. Now I have just finished a letter to Will, which I will send over to him tomorrow.

NOTE: The next diary entry is May 19.


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