Sidney J Keys
Lance Corporal 25438 - Sherwood Foresters
Notts Derby Regiment 11th Battalion
Killed in Action Flanders 15th September 1917 : Aged 26
Tyne Cot Memorial - Panel 99 to 102 and 162 to 162A
Born at Kensworth; enlisting Feb 1916 at Derby; Sidney had moved into Hucknall Huthwaite when aged around 18. According to these further detailed press reports he had been employed as a barman, whilst living here at his sisters marital home addressing Mr and Mrs Hughes on Ashfield Street. Reportage also reveals he had a distinguished step-brother in Corporal W. Dean of the Bedfords.
Notts Free Press – 5th October 1917:- Huthwaite Hero's Death Military Medallist killed in Action. After being the recipient of the military Medal as recently as June last, the news of his death in action has come as a great blow to the many friends of private S. Keys, 35438. B Company, 11th Sherwood Foresters, a well-known Huthwaite figure. He lived with his sister and brother-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Hughes, of Ashfield Street, Huthwaite, by whom the following letters have been received last Friday and Monday respectively:
Dear Mrs. Hughes,- It is with deep regret that I have to inform you of the death of Private S. Keys. He was in my platoon and was killed in the front line by shell fire on the 15th. His death was instantaneous and he suffered no pain. During the short period I knew him I always found him a good soldier, who did his duty well. He was buried next day, and I have lost a good man whose place will be very difficult to fill. I wish to express my sympathy with you and your family in this sad bereavement. These are all the details I can give you.
- J. Greville, 2nd. Lieut.
"It is with deep sympathy that I write to tell you that your brother, Private S. Keys, 35438, was killed in action on September 16th. and was buried by his battalion near where he fell. The place will be sent to you. He has died a hero, and I know that he is mourned by many pals. But "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." R.I.P.
May I again offer to you and all his folk at home my sincere sympathy in your great bereavement.- Yours faithfully, J.K. Jones, (Chaplain C.E.)."
Notices also published by the Mansfield Recorder dated 5th October 1917
Private Keys was born at Kensworth, near Luton, and was 26 years old. He came to Huthwaite eight years ago and lived (as stated) with his married sister. He joined up in February, 1916, and being in a low medical class he was in England ten months, and was then put in class A. Three months later he was sent to France. In June he was awarded the Military Medal for remaining at his post, though wounded, and setting a good example to his comrades. His pre-war employment was as a barman, and by reason of his quiet unassuming disposition he had many friends, and the step-brother (Corporal W. Dean), of the Bedfords, has won the D.C.M., but lost his left arm and has had twelve months in hospitals.
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