Sunday 25 March 2018

Edgar William Guy Luff 1892-1918



Edgar William Guy Luff

5 Sep 1892-25 Mar 1918

Edgar William Guy Luff was born on 5th September 1892 in Croydon, the second of two children born to William Harry Luff and Mary Ann Foster William and Mary had been married on 30th June 1889 in East Dulwich and their first child Winifred was born later that year. Harry was a civil servant who rose to become a chief writer at the war office.

Edgar was educated at St. Dunstan's College, Catford, on whose website there is a detailed biography. His first job after leaving school was a clerk at the Union Assurance Office.

He joined the army on 1st September 1914 and was assigned to the 1/5th Battalion Seaforth Highlanders.  While serving with the Highlanders in France he was awarded the 1914-15 Star. In November 1915, he was given a commission as a second lieutenant and moved to the Hampshire Regiment. In March 1916, Edgar was transferred to the Machine Gun Corps and in the same spring, he married Louisa Channer in South London. In April 1917, their daughter Kathleen Winifred was born and 1st June 1917 he was promoted to lieutenant.

By early 1918, Edgar was serving with the 63rd Machine Gun Brigade, who were deployed to the Western Front as part of the Third Army. What was later to be known as the Spring Offensive was launched by the Germans on March 21st 1918. The allies were taken by surprise and over the next few days German troops infiltrated the allied trenches and despite great bravery by allied soldiers, many were killed or taken prisoner. On the 25th, they reached the area where the 63rd Machine Gunners were operating and attacked. It was at first thought that Edgar Luff had been taken prisoner but an eyewitness account later confirmed that he had died. His body was never found and he is commemorated on the Arras Memorial.

Back home, his wife was expecting their second child and Edna Louisa was born in October 1918. Louisa never remarried. In 1939 she was living with her daughter Edna in Upper Norwood and she died in 1978 in Canterbury. Edna died unmarried in 1982 in Devon while Kathleen married in 1945, had a daughter and moved to Wales.

In Memory of
Lieutenant Edgar William Guy Luff
"A" Coy. 63rd Bn., Machine Gun Corps (Infantry) who died on 25 March 1918 Age 25
Son of M. A. Luff, of 57, Dunvegan Rd., Eltham, London, and the late William H. Luff
Husband of Louisa Mary Luff, of 31, Braeside Rd., Streatham, London.
Remembered with Honour
Arras Memorial

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