Private Israel Burnett Westerman. 15/1277

Private Israel Burnett Westerman. 15/1277

Born Hirst, Northumberland, 1896

Killed in action, Gavrelle, France 3/5/1917.

Israel Burnett Westerman was the eldest of two children born to Lincoln, a Wesleyan Town Missioner ( lay preacher ) and Sarah Elizabeth Westerman, at the outbreak of WW1 the family were living at 36, Rycroft Street,Ossett, Yorks.

Israel enlisted in early 1915 and served as a private with 10 platoon of C company in Colsterdale Egypt and France.

On the 1st of July 1916 on the first day of the battle of the Somme, C company of the Pals were the first over the top, Israel was wounded within the first few minutes and later evacuated to a first aid post behind the lines, after several weeks in hospital he retuned to his unit, then in late 1916 he was again wounded, although this time it was not serious enough to require hospital treatment.

When the Leeds Pals attacked Gavrelle in the opening phase of the Arras offensive on the 3rd of May 1917 he was listed as missing in action, His death in action was confirmed a few weeks later.

Having no known grave he is commemorated on the ARRAS Memorial, Pas De Calais, France.

The very tragic part of this profile is that Israel Burnett’s Father Lincoln, who at 48 when the war broke was well over the legal limit for enlistment, also served in the War. He must have lied about his age, because a few weeks after his sons death on the 3rd May 1917, he was also killed in the same offensive at Gavrelle on the 23rd of May 1917 at the age of 51.

He like his son as no known grave and is also commemorated on the ARRAS Memorial, Pas De Calais, France.

Israel’s younger brother William,the last of the family line also served as a Private with the West Yorkshire Regiment and although severely wounded in late 1917 survived the war.

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