FULLER, John Arthur

No.G/18813, Private, John Arthur FULLER
Aged 20

9th Battalion, Royal Sussex Regiment
formerly G/25036 East Kent Regiment (The Buffs)
Killed in Action on Thursday, 21st March 1918

John Fuller was born in 1897 in Stetchworth (Newmarket Q4-1897 3B:500), the son of John and Ellen Elizabeth FULLER (née PLUMMER).

1901 census...Aged 3, he was at High Street, Stetchworth with his father John T FULLER [26], a painter, born Padfield, Derby; his mother Ellen [26] born Ingham and brother Kenneth [1] born Stetchworth.

1911 census...Aged 13, he was still at High Street, Stetchworth with his parents, brother Kenneth and brother Thomas [9] and sister Rita [2] both born in Stetchworth.

He enlisted in Newmarket
The 21st March 1918 was the 1st day of the Battle for St Quentin. Part of the 73rd Brigade of the 24th Division they faced the most intensive barrage and then the onslaught known at Operation Michael, The Kaiserschlacht began. Thrown against a weakened British line where Brigades had been reduced from 4 to 3 battalions, this was a desperate last fling by the Germans who very quickly overran the British along a 50 mile front.
Storm troopers led, rapidly cutting through the British lines but leaving the more heavily defended strongpoints to be mopped up by following infantry. Very quickly many areas that had been so costly to take and hold for two years fell under German control again. In total the British losses during this campaign were around 180,000,but the Germans lost 240,000. Whereas the Allies were then beginning to be reinforced by the Americans, the Germans had used all their reserves and from then on were steadily pushed back. From the Germans very nearly taking Amiens, within 7 months the war was over.

The 9th Royal Sussex had 24 killed that day, only 4 have identified graves

photo; Roy Beardsworth

John Fuller is commemorated on the Pozieres Memorial, France, panel 46-47

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details