Little is known of Private Albert Beaver. He was born in Oakham but he enlisted in London while living in Camden Town. He served with the Second Battalion Leicestershire Regiment and was killed in action in Mesopotamia [Iraq] on 7 January 1916 during the Battle of Sheik Sa'ad. The battalion was part of Tigris Corps, ordered to relieve an Anglo-Indian force under siege at Kut-al-Amarrah, south of Baghdad. The Leicestershires, who had arrived in southern Iraq in early December 1915, set off with the rest of Tigris Corps on 4 January. Two days later they met Ottoman forces at Sheik Sa'ad. The battalion war diary says the Leicestershires, part of 28th Brigade, were ordered to attack at 2pm. "The attack progressed and was met by very heavy rifle and machine gun fire." By 4.35pm "...it became evident that the enemy's line was thrown forward and the left of the battalion was becoming enveloped...any further advance would be extremely inadavisable." The battalion dug in and the following day, 7 January, the attack was resumed "in spite of very strong opposition." Tigris Corps managed to push the Turks back but the cost was heavy. Albert, and another Rutland soldier Robert Rosling, were among 300 casualties suffered by the Leicestershires. Their bodies were buried on the right bank of the Tigris but the graves did not survive and now the men are now commemorated on Panel 12 of the Basra Memorial. Albert is also remembered on the war memorial in Oakham. Albert's nephew, also called Albert Beaver, also died in Iraq, from typhoid, and is buried at Basra War Cemetery.
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