John Brown Gunner 59339 - "J" Battery, Royal Horse Artillery Killed by a lightning strike on Sunday 10th June 1917, aged 26. Buried Tincourt New British Cemetery, Somme, France John Brown was adopted into the family of Charles and Florence Elizabeth Bratton (née Harding) who had married in 1888. Both Charles’ mother and grandmother had the maiden name ‘Brown’ so there may have been a family connection, indeed they described John as their grandson in 1901 when he was ten years old, although after thought this was changed to ‘nurse-child’. However he had become their adopted son by 1911. The Bratton’s were wheelwrights and carpenters from Gnosall who in 1911 were working for the Shropshire Union Canal Company in Norbury – John as a blacksmith’s striker so, a strong young man. A few years later the family had returned to Gnosall and were living at the Hollies. John Brown entered the theatre of war in France on the 13 th  April 1915 as Gunner 59339 of “J” Battery, Royal Horse Artillery. After two years of fighting, John’s Company were on the Western Front where, in June 1917 the weather was extremely wet and, on the 10 th  of that month (a Sunday, day of church parades when possible) there was a lightning strike which hit and killed John Brown. He was 26 years old. John was buried at Tincourt New British Cemetery in Plot 10, Row A, Grave 12 and was later awarded the British War Medal, the Victory Medal and the 1915 Star. His headstone inscription reads “A True Englishman – Without Fear - Faithful Unto Death”.