Legion plans service for fallen hero

Dennis Marshall has helped organise the service.
Dennis Marshall has helped organise the service.

A remembrance service for one of the town’s fallen World War One soldiers is to be held by the Morley British Legion.

Private William Robinson Dent drowned during a training exercise on February 15 1915 aged just 21.

Pte Dent, of ‘D’ Company 4th Battallion King’s Own Yorkshire Light Infantry, had his details recorded by the Commonwealth Grave Commission and was laid to rest in Morley later that year.

To mark the 100th anniversary of his death, the Legion will hold a wreath laying ceremony on Thursday February 19 at 11am. Local councillors and figures connected to the Forces are expected to be in attendance, with members of the public also invited to the service, which will be held at Morley Cemetery.

Despite efforts by the Legion to discover more about Pte Dent’s background and trace his family, they have been unable to locate any relatives and much of his life remains shrouded in mystery.

Legion member Dennis Marshall said: “When we were researching and we came across William Dent, we thought it would be rather nice to commemmorate the 100th anniversary of his passing with a ceremony.

“We look upon it as a commitment that we honour soldiers like Pte Dent because they died for us. The least we can do is commemmorate them.”

Later in the year, a similar ceremony will be held for Gunner Percy Whitaker, 1st West Riding Brigade, who died in July 1915. It is hoped that notice of Pte Dent’s service will alert any living relatives he may have, either in Morley or from further afield. Anyone with any enquiries regarding this is asked to contact either the Observer & Advertiser at editorial@morleytoday.co.uk or the British Legion on 0808 802 8080.