“The first attackers were into the trench long before the mist lifted. I was so occupied with the flanks that I barely saw them before they peered out of the mist and leaped into the trench. In a moment we were all mixed up in hand-to-hand fighting.
I had two men coming at me with their bayonets, one of whom I shot with my revolver while a Sergeant standing behind me shot the other at point blank range with his rifle barrel over my shoulder. That’s when a German stick bomb came whistling into the trench from the parapet right into the bunch of us. It killed or wounded practically the whole lot of us. English and German alike.
Wether it was this bomb or the bayonet stab that gave me the wound on me neck, I do not know. It might have been either. For a moment we were clear, but there was a nasty little shambles around us. Sergeant Adcock, who had just saved my life, having his head blown off. I felt awfully weak and discovered that a river of blood was flowing from my neck.
I tried to bandage it, but the bandage wouldn’t hold. Before they attacked again, they brought up some trench mortars and pounded the seven hells out of us then swarmed into the trench. By that time there were only a handful of us left on our feet, and I suppose all of us wounded.
I got another wound from a stick bomb, which put a little piece of metal in my thigh. Before I collapsed, I tried to give the surrender signal and hoped I succeeded, thereby saving a few lives. We had done our best but there was nothing more we could do to resist.”
– Captain Charles Miller. British Army in France. 1918.
As we always say here at Battles and Beers (TM) Every soldier has a story, and every story deserves to be told.