PRIVATE JOSEPH EDWARD PUGH
ROYAL IRISH REGIMENT
25TH OCTOBER 1918 AGE 30
BURIED: LA KREULE MILITARY CEMETERY, HAZEBROUCK, FRANCE
Private Joseph Pugh served with the 7th Battalion Royal Irish Regiment, part of the 21st Infantry Brigade, 30th Division. He died on 25 October 1918 and was buried in a Casualty Clearing Station Cemetery at Hazebrouck. It is difficult to think where he might have been wounded or killed. At the time of his death his battalion were 50 km further east near Zaandvoorde. The Casualty Clearing Stations only returned to Hazebrouck in October and even on 1 October the battalion were 30 km away in Comines. Nevertheless, Pugh, who served originally with the Royal Dublin Fusiliers, died on 25 October 1918 and is buried in Hazebrouck.
Pugh was not an Irishman. He came from Tregynon a small community near Newtown in Wales where his father was a farmer. It was his wife, Sarah, who chose his inscription. Her address was Tan y Bryn, Sarn, Newtown, another small farming community not far from Tregynon.
It is a traditional inscription, one that chimes with all those relations who chose 'Thy will be done', or 'Not my will but Thine be done O Lord' or 'God knows best', an attitude of acceptance that we today find difficult to comprehend, especially perhaps for someone who was killed within two weeks of the end of the war.