“I ONCE WAS LOST BUT NOW AM FOUND ... AND GRACE WILL LEAD ME HOME” reads the very poignant epitaph on Pte. Edmundson's new headstone.
On Wednesday 14th March many people gathered to attend the burial service of Pte Private THOMAS TELFORD EDMUNDSON in Perth China Wall CWGC cemetery. He was killed in action during 2nd Battle of Ypres on 26th April 1915 aged 20 years and lost on the battlefield along with seven of his comrades on that particular day. Their names are all engraved on the Menin Gate Memorial to those who have no known grave.
In 2015, exactly one hundred years later, Pte Edmundson's mortal remains were discovered during construction works at Zonnebeke near Ypres. DNA evidence confirmed his identity allowing his family members of today to attend his military with honours funeral.
Pte Edmundson served with "B" Coy in the 1st/7th Bn. Durham Light Infantry and was the son of George and Mary Edmundson from Sunderland. The reburial ceremony was attended by the family of Pte. Edmundson from the UK and from Canada. The burial party consisted of the Battalion Padre and a burial detachment including bandsmen from 1 Rifles ( a battalion descended from the Durham Light Infantry). Revd. John Swanston, the Army Chaplain of the 1st Btn led the funeral with full military honours together with the Rifles Regt. and the military band. It was very well performed tribute to their predecessor who lost his life and who now finally has a known grave.
Rest in peace Pte Edmunson. Your self sacrifice has not been forgotten !