Reginald Francis PRIME
Rank: Lance Corporal
Number: 67071
Unit: 25th Battalion (Nova Scotia Regiment) Canadian Infantry
Date of Death: 20 September 1917
Age: 21
Cemetery: Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, Pas de Calais


Reginald was born in the South Manchester area on 20 December 1894. He was the son of Richard Needham Prime and Annie Prime, 47 Shaw Road, Heaton Moor.

Nothing is known of his early life but, sometime before 1914, he emigrated to Canada to farm and had settled near Halifax in Nova Scotia. His attestation papers, dating from when he enlisted at Halifax on 6 November 1914, are available on-line at the Canadian National Archives. These show him to be six feet tall - an imposing figure in those days when average heights were much shorter that today. He had a 37 inch chest which he could expand by a further 4.5 inches. Reginald had a fair complexion with blue eyes and light brown hair. He had recorded his religion as Wesleyan.

Reginald will have gone overseas to France with the newly formed battalion in September 1915 and will, no doubt, have seen action during the Battle of the Somme, in 1916, and the Third Battle of Ypres which started on 31 July 1917.

Reginald died in a military hospital from wounds he had received. Without an examination of his service file (held at the Canadian National Archives) it is not possible to know when he received these injuries. The Canadian Official History of the War records that the end of August and the month of September was a relatively quiet time. If this is when Reginald was wounded, then it is likely to have been from sniper or shellfire, rather than through combat. He may, of course, have been wounded much earlier and had spent a long time in hospital.

The news of his death would have quickly reached his parents at Stockport. Six months later, another telegram would be delivered to Shaw Road, telling them of the death of their eldest son, Arnold, who had been serving as a 2nd Lieutenant with the Manchester Regiment, on 31 March 1918. Arnold's body was never recovered and identified and he is commemorated on the Memorial to the Missing at Pozieres.

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