My grandmother’s first husband was stationed out in France from 1914 and unfortunately he was killed in the Battle of Aubers in May 1915. His name was James Henry Gittins. When he was killed my grandmother became a nurse. She used to work in the hospital in South Wales where they brought the wounded back from France. After the war she met my grandfather  and eventually they got married and had a number of children, including my mother.

A few years ago I went to France to visit the grave of her first husband, James Henry Gittins. It was a really strange experience standing there thinking that if he hadn’t been killed I wouldn’t be here today.  I found that very emotional, the fact that he’d died almost so that I could live.

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David Watkins – Gallery