- Surnames starting with the letter W. 

Georges Pierre Wilkens CdeG

Ship/Rgn/Sqn No:19th EDTM
Name of Rgt or Ship:Military Francaise attd. British Army
How Died:Died of Wounds (Gas)
Country of burial:U.K.Grave Photo:Yes
Cemetery or Memorial:Sale Cemetery
Town Memorial:Sale
Extra Information:
Born in  France in 1873, he had resided at Sale for 25 years.     A
prominent member of St. Anne's Christian Brotherhood and an enthusiastic
musician and played the Cello.

1881 Census - 21 Myrtle Grove,  Ardwick,  Manchester.   Son - aged: 8 -
Scholar - born: France (Foreign).    Head of household - Charles A. Wilkens
- Married - aged: 34 - occ: Agent for a Foreign Drysalter - born: France
(British Subject).     Also - Anna H. Wilkens - Wife - aged: 25 - born:
France (British Subject).

1891 Census - 37 Derby Street, Moss Side, Manchester.    Son - aged: 14 -
occ: Clerk - born: France.    Head of household - Charles A. Wilkens -
Married - aged: 44 - occ: Drysalter & Agent - born: France.     Also - Anna
H. Wilkens - Wife - aged: 38 - born: France.

1901 Census - 17 Essex Road, Sale.   Head - Married - aged: 28 - occ:
General Agent & Drysalter - born: France.   Also Annie Wilkens - Wife -
aged: 29 - born: Hulme, Manchester.    Plus Charles Wilkens - son - aged: 5
- born: Sale.

1911 Census - 17 Essex Road, Sale.    Head - Married - aged: 38 - occ: Yarn
Doubler And Winder - born: France.  Also Annie Wilkens - Wife - aged: 37 -
occ: Registry Office Servant - born: Manchester.    Plus their youngest son
- Arthur Wilkens - aged: 3 - born: Sale.   Their eldest son - Charles -
aged: 13, was then residing at Woolaston Near Lydney Gloucestershire, where
he was attending school.

He married  Annie Mary Louise Harrison during the March quarter 1895 in the
Altrincham R.D. - ref: 8a/221.   They were married at St. Anne's Church,
Sale Moor on the 6th March 1895.   Annie was the daughter of Charles &
Annie Harrison who resided at 383 Northenden Road, Sale Moor.

At the outbreak of war in August 1914, he took a keen interest in the
formation of the "Sale Civilian Corps" which, subsequently became the 'B' 
(Sale & Ashton) Company of the 1st Volunteer Bn. Cheshire Rgt.

He volunteered in 1915, but was rejected as being too old and having
"passed military age".    He then applied to the French Army, who promised
to send for him, but up to early 1916 he had received no word from them.   
 Not to be beaten, he obtained a passport and travelled to France in order
to enlist.   He was more successful this time (the French had suffered huge
number of casualties, particularly at Verdun) and he was chosen to be an
interpreter, attached to the British Forces.

Escachon Du Train Mission.  (19th Squadron of the Train - Reserve
territorial Army Auxilliary Service)   He served as an Interpreter for the
French Army.

The 21/06/1918 edition of the local newspaper reported on him being awarded
the Croix de Guerre.   the Officer Commanding the French Mission stated
that "Interpreter Wilkens went out under heavy shell fire and gave great
assistance to my Medical Officer in rescuing two men who were badly wounded
and buried in a ruined building.   Later on, he assisted a Corporal, who
had had his leg and arm blown off, into an ambulance all under heavy shell
fire.   I would add that this is not the first occasion on which I have
witnessed good work performed by Interpreter Wilkens"

Under an order given by Divisional General, Chief of the French Military
Mission. "Private Georges Wilkens volunteered for the duration of the war
to be appointed to and maintained with a combatant unit.  He has always
given the example of courage and devotion to duty during the Battle of
Cambrai.   Under violent bombardment, he showed indifference to danger when
assisting in picking up wounded or in taking orders around the battlefield
or guiding ammunition supplies".

After being gassed, he died of Wounds (Gas) and was buried on the 4th March
1919 - Burial No. 15,912.   M.I. - "A Soldiers Duty Nobly Done".

Listed as a "Drysaler", was listed in the local 1899 Directory as living at
17 Essex Road.  Also the 1915 Directory.

His death was reported in the 7th March 1919 edition of the Sale Guardian. 
As he served in the French Army, he is not recognised by the CWGC.
Memorials found on:
St. Anne's (Sale Moor)
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