Urmston WW1 

John Francis Kelly

Ship/Rgn/Sqn No:07th Bn [1]
Name of Rgt or Ship:Lancashire Fusiliers
Country of burial:U.K.Grave Photo:Yes
Cemetery or Memorial:Salford (Weaste) Cem
Town Memorial:Not Listed
Extra Information:
The son of Henry & Ellen Kelly.

Murdered by Private Walter Taylor at the Cross Lane Barracks, Salford.  
The first witness at the inquest into his death was his sister - Margaret
Kelly, 38 Armitage Street, Patricroft.    She stated that her deceased
brother was a 27 year old Iron Worker who enlisted seven years ago in the
7th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers.   He had seen actice service at the
Dardenelles and had come home last January as a time-expired man and had
then left the Army.   He went back to his old trade, but after only one
month, he re-enlisted in the 7th Battalion, Lancashire Fusiliers.    He
was, she said, in good health when she last saw him when he left her home
on the 26th April stating that he would be back for dinner at 12.45.   He
was going to the Hippodrome Theatre that night and had booked seats.  The
Judge then asked her if her brother was in possession of any money, to
which she replied that he was as she had asked him for some money before he
left and she saw them when he opened his purse.   She stated that he owned
a knife that was quite new as it was given to him with his uniform on the
morning he re-enlisted.

She said that he had mentioned the name, Walter Taylor to her and said that
he was a sailor, he was a fine man, but very quiet.   She had identified
her brothers body at the Silk Street, Mortuary.

Sergeant Roger Roberts giving evidence stated that the prisoner had been
reported as being absent from parade and that Captain Cartwright had
ordered that he be put into the guardroom until he had chance to deal with
him.   The prisoner was not then under arrest and Private John Kelly had
been detailed to see that he did not leave the Barracks.   He stated that
when he was returning from his own dinner at 14.15 hrs, he had met the
prisoner casually walking along Cross Street with his hands behind his
back.  He asked why he was out of the Barracks and was told the the man
guarding him had let him out for some fresh air.   Together with a Corporal
Cooper, he then went to the guardroom at 14.45 hrs and found Private
Kelly's body - his throat had been cut and he was lying on his back in a
pool of blood around his shoulders.   He was asked if the prisoner had
recently received any pay, to which he replied - yes, 6/- .  

The Post Mortem revealed that Private Kelly's throat had been cut from ear
to ear, inflicted with six separate strokes of a knife, so deep that it had
gone through to his vertebrae and had cut through all his blood vessels.

The Jury's verdict was "Wilfull Murder" and Walter Taylor was committed for
trial.   However the doctors at Strangeways Prison where he was held
decided that he was insane and he was detained at "His Majesty's

A description of his funeral;

The Funeral of the victim of the Barracks Tragedy took place on Monday at
Weaste Cemetery, when the proceedings were distinguished by military
honours of a very impressive character.   Apart from the relatives of the
deceased from 150 to 200 uniformed men attended in marching order
accompanied by the Royal Engineers East Lancashire Band.   As the cortège
wended its way to the cemetery huge masses of silent witnesses assembled
along the whole of the route.   The cemetery, however, was crowded with
people.    As the last rights were administered and the coffin was lowered
into the grave the Royal Engineers Band played the Dead March in
“Saul”.   The last post was afterwards sounded and three volleys were
fired from fourteen or fifteen rifles.   A magnificent wreath from the
Cross Lane Barracks represented the Union Jack and bore the Regimental
Colours.   The ceremony of most impressive character and hardly a person
present succeeded in suppressing vivid signs of emotion.
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