In memoriam: our Valiant fallen

In memoriam: our Valiant fallen

OVF would like to pay tribute to Port Vale players, officials, fans and all other men and women who gave their lives serving their country.

Port Vale’s Valiant dead

According to our research, Port Vale lost two players during World War One. One was inside-right Frank Cannon who was killed on the Western Front on 15th February 1916 and was buried in Potijze in Belgium. The other was John (Jack) Shelton who was conscripted in the summer of 1917 and died in September 1918. Inside-forward Alf Smith was also seriously wounded and never played football again.

Former Vale players to die during World War One

  • David Murray (Port Vale 1910-1911) was killed during the Battle of Loos in 1915
  • John Yuill (Port Vale, time at club unknown) was killed in Flanders in 1916
  • Bob Suart (Port Vale, 1911-1915) was killed in 1918 just six weeks before the end of the war
  • Phillip Smith (Port Vale, 1905-1906) was killed on 29 September 1918, just twelve days before the war ended.

Meanwhile, former player Leigh Roose (Port Vale, 1910) was killed at the battle of the Somme. A larger-than-life character, Roose really deserves a feature all to himself. A Welsh International, he was once named as one of the country’s most-eligible bachelors by a national newspaper. A goalkeeper with a noted long-throw expert, his role in the army was that of grenade thrower. He received the Military Medal for his bravery but sadly died towards the end of the Battle of the Somme.

In World War Two, Vale lost former players Tom Cooper (Vale 1924-1926), Fred Mills (Vale 1932-1934), Haydyn Dackins (1935-1936) and Sam Jennings (1929-1931). Meanwhile, future captain Tommy Cheadle was injured by a German grenade and Jack Roberts managed to escape from a German prisoner of war camp in 1944.

Apart from players and Vale staff mentioned above, there have also been several Port Vale fans who have also lost their lives serving their country and on this Remembrance Day, we pay tribute to all men and women who have died serving their country.

The Ode of Remembrance

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them


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