George Freear died on the 31st of July 1917, aged 26.
Born in Garthorpe to parents Thomas and Sarah Rebecca (or Rebekah) Freear the 1911 census finds the 20 year old George Thomas Freear newly married (by 4 months) to Lilian (nee Harrison also 20) living on Luddington Lane, Luddington, Lincolnshire. Also in the household were his parents along with younger brother Arthur, all the men in the family, including 15 year old Arthur, working as Agricultural labourers.
Married to George in the last quarter of 1910, 20 year old Lilian was born in Burringham, her maiden name being Harrison. Their daughter Ruby was born in 1912, followed by Robert (Bob), George, William (Bill). The family eventually moved over the river and settled in Burton Stather.
We know from our own Burton Stather/Freear family connections, that George Freear's brothers Arthur and Edwin also lived in Burton Stather. Arthur joined up in January 1916 and when demobilized in 1919 his address was given as 3 Old Row, Burton Stather where he lived with his wife, also called Lillian. Edwin moved his young family from Crosby in 1915/16 to live, initially on Bunkers Hill, then Trentside House and latterly Lindsey Terrace by the end of WW2. Arthur Leslie Freear (Les) one of the village lads lost during WW2 and whose name appears on the Memorial Bench opposite Lindsey Terrace was Edwin's eldest son.
Ruby Freear, George and Lilian Freear's daughter married and became Ruby Gray and after Mrs Leeson she ran the little shop that fronted the old wooden Burton Stather Working Mens Club on Stather Road. George's widow Lilian remarried in 1927 to John Bennett and the family were settled in 21 Old Row. They went on to have a daughter Mavis, who married Les Render.
Myself, my Sister-in-law Vivienne and her Aunt Carol Aucock (nee Freear) spent a lovely afternoon visiting with Mavis who was able to fill in many blanks in the family history. She fondly recalls a large photograph of her step sibling's father which always hung on the wall in the house whilst they were growing up. She also recalls over the years admiring the beautiful cards that George sent from France to his wife, his daughter Ruby and the other young children, sadly only Ruby was old enough to retain any memories of her father.
We were also sad to learn that Lilian not only lost her young husband George but also two of her brothers George and Robert Harrison from Burringham. She obviously named two of her sons for them and they are both commemorated on the Burringham War Memorial.
George Freear is also commemorated on a hand written Roll of Honour in Luddington St Oswalds, his name has been spelt George Frear.
The War Records for George are not available due to the fire which destroyed many during WW2 but we do know that on the 31st of July 1917 the 2nd Lincolns were in Flanders part of the 8th Division, involved with the Third Battle of Ypres which was launched that day.