William Verlander (1899 – 1917) lived with his family at 15 Crowhurst Road when his father James enrolled him at North School.
William joined up with the Norfolk Regiment just before his 18th birthday in November 1916. He remained at home for the next year and was posted on 30 November 1917. The troop ship that he was sailing on, HT Aragon, was torpedoed by a German submarine outside of the port of Alexandria. All the crew were lost.
The telegram informing William’s father on 30th January 1918 reads:
“Regret to inform you that War Office reports no 37025 Pte Verlander Norfolk Regt missing believed drowned on 30 Dec 1917”.
He is remembered on the Chatby Memorial in Egypt and at home on the St Mary at the Walls roll of honour (now Colchester Arts Centre).
1903 – 1913 Admission Register
UK, Army Registers of Soldiers’ Effects, 1901-1929
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919
British Army WWI Service Records, 1914-1920