Prestatyn grave of Charles William Cooke
Grave of Charles William Cooke (d.1919)
Charles was born and educated at Altrincham, Cheshire. After being apprenticed to a watchmaker, he changed career and joined the army, enlisting into the Royal Field Artillery as a telephonist.
Charles was part of the British Expeditionary Force and landed in France soon after the outbreak of the First World War in August 1914. His gallantry both at the First Battle of Aisne in September 1914 and at the Battle of Festubert in May 1915 earned him the Distinguished Conduct Medal and recognition for his gallantry in continuing to lay down and repair cables while coming under heavy enemy shell fire.
Charles served with the RFA for over three years and was injured on three separate occasions. In November 1918, less than a week after the Armistice, Charles married Fannie Hughes of Ansdell, Sandy Lane, at Christ Church, Prestatyn. After the reception they travelled along the coast to Llandudno for a short honeymoon.
Serjeant Charles Cooke died at Kinmel Camp near Bodelwyddan on St David’s Day 1919, following an operation needed as a result of gas poisoning received in France. He was 27 years of age.