The following excerpt is from a family history success story by Gemma Fraser, published in the December 31, 2010 edition of the Edinburgh Evening News.
THE closest surviving relatives of a soldier killed in a bomb blast in France more than 90 years ago have been traced by Edinburgh historians.
Charles F Fox died on June 6, 1918, on a farm in the village of Fletre in northern France, along with two other Edinburgh soldiers, William Marr Constable and Andrew Scott Greig.
Farm owner Didier Godderis enlisted the help of local historian Yvonne McEwen, honorary fellow at Edinburgh University’s Centre for the Study of the Two World Wars, to find out more about the men killed in his barn all those years ago.
Along with her husband Alistair, she managed to find personal details of the soldiers from the 1901 census and from birth records and has now managed to track down members of Edinburgh-born Mr Fox’s family.
Gordon McDonald is Mr Fox’s great-great-great nephew and was traced by the historians through the website ancestry.co.uk, as Mr McDonald had already been researching his family tree.
He said he had been aware of the existence of Mr Fox, but knew no more than that.
Mr McDonald, a physics teacher at Beath High School in Fife, said: “His closest living relative is actually my mother, who is 84, as my mum’s grandmother, Emily Fox, was Charles’ sister. My mum can remember her but doesn’t remember Charles. I hadn’t researched Charles as such as part of the family tree so I hadn’t realised he was a war casualty.