CAPTAIN THOMAS THOMAS
23RD AUGUST 1917 AGE 24
BURIED: BARD COTTAGE CEMETERY, YPRES, BELGIUM
This Welsh inscription, a quotation from 2 Timothy 4:7, translates as 'I have fought the good fight'. The verse continues, 'I have finished my course, I have kept the faith'. It's a popular inscription but strange as it may sound it appears to be only popular on officers' graves. I can't think of any reason for this.
Thomas Thomas was commissioned into the 13th Battalion, Welsh Regiment on the outbreak of war. Raised in Llanelli in August 1914 it didn't cross to France until December 1915. Initially in the Ypres sector it moved down to the Somme in June 1916 where it took part in the capture of Mametz Wood. It was then moved north again to Ypres. On 31 July 1917 it took part in the capture of Pilkem Ridge where it suffered heavy losses. After being rested, the battalion returned to the front line on 20 August, going into the trenches along the line of the Steenbeek. Thomas was killed by shell fire on the 23rd.