MORTON GRENADIER FALLS
From a chum in the same regiment Mr & Mrs Thomas Mallender , of New Street, Morton, has received information of their son , Private Percy Mallender, who was serving with the 1st Company of the 3rd Battalion Grenadier Guards , being killed in action “ somewhere in France”, on October 8th. His last thoughts were of his sweetheart, a young lady living in London, and just before the end came he asked Pvte D. Cronin to convey the news to her that he had died a hero. In a sympathetic communication to the parents Pvte Cronin mentions that on October 8th the Grenadier Guards had been fighting all day long , and it was towards evening when Percy was hit and died about 15 minutes afterwards. “ I did all I could for him” he says “ but the poor fellow was too badly wounded to live”. “ Your son was very much liked by all the boys . Some very fierce fighting is taking place here , and we lost very heavily that day. It is a miracle that anybody is alive, as the Germans are using every possible thing against us”.
The battle in which Private Mallender met his fate was fought two miles from Loos, south of La Bassee and his parents have been informed that he was shot through the head but suffered no pain whatever. He was buried by his comrades where he fell , and a cross was erected over the grave.
Mr & Mrs Thomas Mallender prior to removing to Morton lived at Swadlincote, where deceased worked as a miner in the Granville pits. He was aged 21 years, and did two camps with the 5th Battalion Sherwood Foresters Territorials. Soon after the outbreak of war , he enlisted in the Grenadier Guards, to be precise, on August 23rd 1914 and proceeded to the Front on July 20th 1915.
A muffled peal was rung on the Morton Parish Church bells on Sunday and a memorial service was conducted by the Rector (Canon Prior) .
Derbyshire Times: 6th November 1915 p8