Joseph Edward Rodgers was a career soldier, born at Whissendine on 6 December 1880, the son of William and Ellen Rodgers. He joined the 3rd Battalion Coldstream Guards in October 1900 and in three years rose to the rank of Sergeant. He then transferred to the Military Foot Police and as a Corporal went to Gibraltar where he stayed for about four years. Returning to Aldershot, he was placed in charge of the plain clothes section of the Military Police and again rose to the rank of Sergeant. He went out to France with the original Expeditionary Force in 1914 and was with the General Staff at St. Omer. Joseph obtained a Commission in his old regiment, the Coldstream Guards and joined the 1st Battalion. He was wounded in January 1915 and died in hospital on 25 January from bullet wounds. A letter from a fellow officer at Aldershot to his parents said: "The Army has lost a splendid man in your son. He was honoured by all, even by those who differed from him. You will know of his fine work at Aldershot. The wrong 'uns feared him. At the last Petty Sessions a number of magistrates and officers paid a tribute to your son's integrity and uprightness." Joseph was 34 and left a wife, Mary, and two young children living in Plymouth. He is buried at Lillers Communal Cemetery, grave C.3, and is remembered on Whissendine's war memorial.
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