CWG: Sapper Percy Rodgers

Sapper Percy Rodgers

Percy Wright Rodgers was born in June 1888 in Pilton, Somerset. He was the fifth of eleven children to Levi and Elizabeth Rodgers.

In the 1901 census Levi was listed as a butcher and publican; ten years later, he listed himself as a butcher, slaughter man and shopkeeper.

Percy followed in his father’s footsteps – by the time of the 1911 census, he was boarding with a family in Swanage, Dorset, and worked as a butcher’s assistant.

1913 was a busy year for Percy. He married Frances Bower, they had their first child, Percy Augustus, and he emigrated to the United States (Frances and Percy Jr followed a year later).

In the 1915 New York census, Percy and his family are listed in in the town of Cortland, around 200 miles north of New York City. Percy describes himself as a meat cutter – following in his father’s footsteps – and he and his wife now have a second child, Vera, who was born in the States.

Sapper Rodgers joined the Canadian Engineers in May 1918; he was shipped abroad, back to Europe, but his service appeared short-lived. He contracted pneumonia, and was admitted to the Canadian Hospital in Eastbourne, East Sussex. He passed away on 5th November 1918, at 30 years of age.

Sapper Percy Wright Rodgers lies at rest in the churchyard of St John the Baptist in his home village of Pilton. His grave is topped with a cross dedicated by his widow, Frances.

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