Farrier/Sergeant Frederick Riley
3497 Royal Field Artillery 124 Btty
Killed in Action 25th May 1915, aged 37
Lived in Dundalk, Ireland
Formerly 4 Godiva Street
Buried in White
House Cemetery, Belgium 111 S8
Commemorated in Burnley
2/6/1915 - 5/6/1915
Frederick Riley was born in Burnley – his parents lived at 4 Godiva
Street. He enlisted in the Royal Field Artillery at Burnley as a regular
soldier. He died on Tuesday 25th May 1915 as Serjeant 3497 124th Royal
Field Artillery. Frederick Riley He is buried in White House Cemetery,
Ypres grave III S 8.
The Burnley Express of June 5 1915 reported that:-
“‘A Valuable Man’. Burnley Soldiers Death A Great Loss.
As briefly mentioned on Friday Farrier-Sergt. F. Riley 3497 of the R.F.A.
who was killed in action on May 25th , is a Burnley man and is very well
remembered. He leaves a widow and 2 children in Dundalk where he was last
Farrier-Sergt., and from the position of driver he had been promoted until
he reached the rank of Farrier-Sergt During his fifteen years service
he had been stationed at Woolwich, Shoeburyness and Dundalk. As a boy
he attended St. Peter’s Day Schools, Burnley. Prior to enlisting
he was a teacher in the Sunday School at Stoneyholme when that school
was under the charge of the Rector of St. Peter’s. Farrier-Sergt.
Riley had been with the Expeditionary Force since the beginning of the
war, and passed safely through the battles of Mons and Ypres.
The last letter he sent was received a fortnight ago, and he enclosed
some lace for his niece which had been made by a woman at a cottage near
where he was staying. In the letter he desired to be remembered to his
old friends in Burnley. On Thursday of last week his parents who reside
at Godiva Street Burnley, received a postcard from him stating that he
was wounded and this was dated May 23rd but on the Saturday news of his
death was received. He was buried by the chaplain, and the major and other
officers were present. One of his comrades writing to the Farrier-Sergt.’s
wife said that the graves of all the men in their battery were well cared
for and would be so long as their was a man left to do so.
On Thursday Mrs Riley received the following letter from the major of
“Dear Mrs Riley, I am deeply grieved to tell you of the death of
your husband. He was killed by a shell on the 25th and died almost immediately
without recovering consciousness. It is a great loss to the battery. Your
husband was a first class farrier, and I had recommended him for promotion.
His loss will be severely felt, and I could ill afford to lose such a
valuable man. I am truly sorry for you, but he died the grandest of all
deaths - on the field of honour. Please accept my deepest sympathy; yours
very truly, G. R. Kinsman. P.S. Your husband lies in a peaceful little
spot with his comrades. Crosses are being put up and a record of the place
is being kept.’”.