The Tank Museum | Recipient

John Frederick Earp

Tank Corps No. 69978
Previously Army Ordnance Corps No. 08291

John was born in Walton-upn-Trent in 1894 and lived with his parents there, becoming a farm labourer until his enlistment in the Army Ordnance Corps in 1915. He later transferred to the Tank Corps, serv ing in France as a Tank Driver in the Bsttle of the somme, where he was blown up and left for dead on the battlefield. Three days later he was found by the British Red Cross, alive but with his right buttock blown away. He was transferred to a Military Hospital in Leeds for treatment where he remained until his honourable discharge on 19th March 1919.

On returning to Walton he managed to get a light job at Bass & Co. in Burton-upon-Trent. This meant him leaving home at 4.30 a.m. to walk from Walton to catch the 6 o'clock bus to work, even though he was in constant pain. He retired at the age of 65.

In 1920 he met and married May Shelton, they went on to have four sons and two daughters, thr three eldest sons served in World War 2, one in the Navy and two in the Army.

John was a lovely man and was never heard to complain even though he was in constant pain. The family will always be grateful to the British Red Cross without who this story would not be told. He died in 1973.

1914-15 STAR