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CWGC Headstone for Decorated Serviceman

22 January 2016

A decorated First World War medic has been given a CWGC headstone after 95 years when his unmarked grave was discovered in a cemetery in the Wirral.

Staff Sergeant Wilfred Brooke, aged 39, of the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) was buried at Wallasey (Rake Lane) Cemetery in July 1920, after he succumbed to injuries sustained during the war.

Like many servicemen, Wilfred came home from the war due to his injuries, but later died because of complications and was buried in his home town, where he lived with his wife.

Wilfred was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal and Bar, Military Medal, Mentioned in Despatches, as well as the Belgian Croix de Guerre.  He signed up in 1914 and in September 1918, he received a gunshot wound, was gassed and contracted Pulmonary Tuberculosis in October of that same year in France, before coming home to England.

Bob Dixon, of the RAMC discovered Wilfred's grave and realised he had not been commemorated with a CWGC headstone. He then requested, via the MOD and CWGC, that Wilfred's case was looked in to. Subsequently, it was agreed that Wilfred had died of his injuries caused during the war and therefore qualified for commemoration.

A headstone was placed on his grave 95 years after his death and a special ceremony took place on January 21, 2016 to remember one of the most decorated medic's in the First World War.

Chris Hawes, Regional Supervisor for the North West, said: "We are extremely grateful to Bob Dixon for bringing Wilfred to our attention. Unfortunately, when Wilfred died, the CWGC was not notified at the time and therefore his incredible story was never told.

"It feels very good to be able to commemorate S Sgt Wilfred Brooke and keep his name living on for future generations to know how hard these men fought for our country."

There are now 250 CWGC graves at Wallasey (Rake Lane) Cemetery.