William Ewart (Billy) Kear

Memorial: Kingswood - Holy Trinity Church

Regiment: Grenadier Guards

Medals: 1914–15 Star, British War Medal, Next of Kin Memorial Plaque 1914 - 1921, Silver War Badge, Victory Medal

Rank and number: Guardsman 17017

Parents: Georgina and Jabez Kear

Home address: 78 Downend Road, Kingswood, Bristol

Pre-war occupation: Bootmaker

Date of birth: 1896

Place of birth: Stapleton, Bristol

Date of death: 10/01/1915

Buried/Commemorated at: Buried at Rue-Des-Berceaux Military Cemetery, Richebourg-L'avoue, Pas de Calais, France and commemorated on Kingswood Holy Trinity Memorial

Age: 18

Further information:

Billy was born in Stapleton the son of a bootmaker and the second youngest of six children with four older brothers and a younger sister. His mother was a widow in 1911 when Billy was 15 and was herself working in the boot industry.

Billy served with the 2nd Battalion, Grenadier Guards (note CWGC incorrectly state Billy was in 3rd Battalion). In August of 1914 Billy's regiment mobilised to France and fought in the First Battle of Ypres during which they suffered devastating losses, leaving only 4 officers and 140 men. The outcome of the battle was a mutual defeat and was followed by trench warfare, in which both sides tried to improve their positions, beset by winter weather, exhaustion and equipment and ammunition shortages. It was during this period of Winter Operations (23 November 1914 – 6 February 1915) that Billy died near the city of Bethune.

By kind permission, this information is based on the following source(s):

This information has been provided by Sarah Hands, Volunteer Researcher for the South Gloucestershire War Memorials Web Site.
By kind permission, this information is based on the following source(s):