Ralph Yarwood, Private 48566, 16th Battalion, Manchester Regiment
Died of Wounds 13th August 1917 in France & Flanders, aged 23
Ralph Yarwood was born in the summer of 1894 in Macclesfield, the son of widow Mary Maria Yarwood of Lower Bank Street, Macclesfield. Mary Yarwood married Samuel Leech at St Paul’s Church, Macclesfield in October 1897, and Ralph was known by the surname Leech for several years, probably until he left home.
The 1901 census shows Ralph Leech at the age of 6 living at 45 Copper Street with his mother and stepfather, older brother George William Stevenson and younger brother Samuel Leech. Ten years later, the family was still at the same address and Ralph and Samuel (jnr) are both employed as Print Workers.
On 28th February 1915, at the age of 21, Ralph Yarwood married 34 year old Mary Jones at the Parish Church, Glodwick, Oldham. Ralph was employed as a Tube Dryer and Mary was a Tube Sorter. They set up home at 7, Back Gladstone Street, Oldham, and the following year their son, also called Ralph, was born.
Ralph enlisted at Oldham, joining the Manchester Regiment, and was sent to the Western Front, where he died of wounds on the 13th August 1917, aged 23 years.
Private Ralph Yarwood is buried in Grave Ref. VIII. I. 3. at Boulogne Eastern Cemetery, Pas de Calais, France. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission holds casualty details for Private Ralph Yarwood, and he is listed on the Imperial War Museum’s Lives of the First World War website.