Private William Mears

Thank you to Patricia Brazier for the following research.

William was born on 2nd August 1893 in Dorking and baptised in the parish church on 16th December 1893. His parents were John and Harriet (nee Weller). John and Harriet married in St Paul’s Church in Dorking on 13th October 1886. They had two other children also born in Dorking; Alfred John in 1887 and Francis Elsie in 1889.

In the 1901 census the family were living at 16 Meadowbrook Road in Dorking. John’s occupation is a Carter. Alfred is a milk boy and William and Francis are at school.

William attended St Martins School in Dorking from May 1897 until 10th March 1908.

When the 1911 census was taken, William is still living with his parents at 16 Meadowbrook Road, he is working as a shop assistant. Alfred, his brother is a Lance Corporal with the 15th Hussars in Barracks in Aldershot. Elsie is a visitor in a hotel in Brighton.

His medal card shows that he first joined the 19th Hussars, service number 8284. He arrived in France on 17th August 1914. The Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser of 26th September 1914 lists all men from the Dorking area who are serving with the forces, William and his brother Alfred are on the list. William then transferred to the Machine Gun Corps on 27th June 1916.

Whilst home on leave, in the September quarter of 1918. William married Edith Kate Figg in Dorking. They had one son, Reginald William Mears.

William died on 1st March 1919 at the 44th Casualty Clearing Station. He is buried in Cologne Southern Cemetery. His wife requested that “A loved one laid to rest those that think of him today are those that loved him best” be inscribed on his headstone. William is also remembered on the Merrow Village Memorial in St John’s Churchyard as his parents had moved to Merrow.

William received the British Medal, the victory Medal and the 1914 Star.  Edith married Lee Hazeltine in September of 1921, they lived in Ockley where she died in 1937.

Alfred, Williams Brother married Kitty James in Merrow in 1916. 

Born Dorking, Surrey
Lived Dorking, Surrey
Son of John and Harriet (nee Weller)
Husband of Edith Kate Figg
Father of Reginald William Mears
Regiment 9th Squadron (Cavalry) Machine Gun Corps
Number 50760
Date of Death 1st March 1919
Place of Death Puchevillers, France
Cause of Death Died of wounds
Age 25
Memorial Cologne Southern Cemetery, Germany