Pte Herbert Perryman

Herbert Perryman was born in 1885 to Alfred and Mary Perryman. He would marry Ella Moule in 1908, where following their marriage they would live in Georgeham. Prior to his service in the first World War, Herbert worked with George Yeo in Mortehoe. Herbert would enlist with the Devonshire Regiment, first serving with the 1st Battalion and then the 2nd, with whom he was serving with when he would be killed on the 9th May 1915. The battle of Auber’s Ridge took place on the 9th May 1915 and would claim 250 causalities from the regiment including that of Pte. Herbert Perryman. The battle was a disastrous attack that cost 11,000 British casualties for no material gain; it was a minor supporting operation to a much larger French attack.

A letter to his wife from Pte. Ward with whom Herbert served, told that Pte. Perryman was in a traverse, when a shell burst, a piece of shrapnel struck Perryman and killed him. He went on to say that: “His fellows always found Private Perryman a true and sincere comrade.” The letter read: Dear Mrs. Perryman, It was with the deepest regret that I am writing these few lines to you, to let you know that your dear husband was fatally injured on May 9th, but I am very pleased to tell you he passed away most peacefully, and as I was with him till the last, I thought it was my duty to let you know.

I am sure we shall miss him, for during the time we have all been together we always found him a most faithful and straightforward comrade, and like many more of our brave heroes, had died for a just and worthy cause. The only thing we can hope is that our loss will be his gain. I am sure my comrades join with me in extending to you our deepest sympathy in your sad and recent bereavement, trusting God will strengthen you and help you to bear up during this terrible and most trying ordeal, and trusting that you will bear up as best you can under the circumstances. A touching memorial service was held on Sunday evening in Georgeham Baptist Chapel, where Herbert had worshipped. There was a large attendance.

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