Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Riseley Man Awarded DCM

Private Sam Barker 

Wednesday 3rd November 1915: The village of Riseley is very proud to hear that Private Sam Barker of the 4th Battalion of the Grenadier Guards has been awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his conspicuous bravery in the field. Private Barker only arrived in France in August and was taking part in his first military engagement at Hill 70 at the end of September when he picked up a wounded officer in the area where the fighting was at its fiercest and carried him to safety. Writing to his mother Private Barker said: “I thought Riseley people would be amazed to hear of that medal affair. I have not got it yet; it may be a month or so, or even longer”.

Riseley’s response to recruiting efforts has been admirable, with between 30 and 40 men joining the Forces. Private Barker was saddened to hear that another Riseley boy, Harry Porter, had been wounded in the face. He writes “Every time I got a chance I hunted high and low for him; but it’s no use now if he is in hospital”.

Source: Bedfordshire Standard, 5th November 1915

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