War Memorial File



Queen’s Royal West Surrey Regiment.

Service number; not known.

Died on July 2nd 1920.

Aged 36 years.

St. Kyneburgha’s churchyard,


Died July 2nd 1920, aged 36 years.

Son of John and Hannah Jakes, of Church Hill, Castor.

Report copied from The Stamford Mercury, dated July 22nd 1916.

PTE, REGINALD JAKES, of Castor, who was also in the list last week, is now reported severely wounded in the head, and it is feared that he will lose the sight of both eyes. He is in hospital at Chelsea, London.

Further information:

Private Reginald Jakes was the third son of John and Hannah Jakes, to die as a result of the Great War.
Before joining up he was Coachman to the Fitzwilliam Family at Milton Hall.
Reginald was blinded and invalided out of the Army in 1917. He was sent to St. Dunstans and learned to read braille, make sisal doormats and string bags.
He died from his wounds having picked up an infection in his eye sockets.
He was married to Mildred, and their son, also called Reginald was born three months after he died.
He was much loved by his family and many friends.

He is buried in Castor churchyard. His stone has the following inscription:

Reginald Jakes
Who died July 2nd 1920.
Aged 36 years.

Blind !

From Castor Hill, a youth went forth to fight
His country’s battles o’er in Northern France,
Leaving home, his mother, and his promised wife;
He saw the path of honour lying clear before him.
And so, he went down to the Devil’s caldron.

Through the battle of the Marne he came unscathed,
Ypres was passed with wondrous lack of wounds;
Then on the Somme, a fateful, bursting shell
Shattered his eyes, and left him poor indeed.
Two weary months in hospital, and then
The doctor’s verdict cut all hope away;
Henceforth, for him, must be for-ever night.
And yet, the promised bride must have her say:

Nobly she played her part - the wedding bells must ring,
And she would be his light, his love, his day.
They wandered through sweet woodland glades together,
And nature, pitying, smiled upon him:
The flowers, the bees, the birds, and all the wild things
Called: “Welcome! welcome! see, we dearly love you,
Because we know you’re blind!”

A golden cord the maid wove round her boy,
And to the altar tenderly she led him,
Guiding his steps - a wife and mother blended:
Then, raising hands with heartfelt gratitude,
She thanked the God Who spared her hero’s life.
. . . . . . . .
High on the hill stands the shrine of the mighty Nazarene,
Crucified near two thousand years ago,
He lives to-day; deathless, immortal.
The young bride, gazing on the sacred edifice,
Took her darling by the hand and led him to the light

W. A. C.

This poem was copied from the Peterborough Advertiser dated November 4th 1916.
Was this written for Private Reginald Jakes?