Born into an Oxford farming family, George joined the cavalry and was sent to France in September 1914. He gained the Military Medal for gallantry.
Born into an Oxford farming family
George Vernon Gare was born in Oxford in 1889, into a farming family. In the early 1900s they moved to Gosford Hill Farm at Water Eaton, and in 1911 George was working there.
Joined the cavalry
As soon as war broke out George went to Woodstock to enlist, and joined the Queen’s Own Oxfordshire Hussars, a cavalry unit. His initial training was short and he landed in France on 20 September 1914, among the first Territorials to see action. His unit continued to be engaged in battles during 1915, but in 1916 they had no major action.
Military Medal for gallantry
In April 1917 they fought at the Battle of Arras. By now George was a veteran who had probably lost many of his original comrades. He had been promoted to Corporal then Sergeant, and had been awarded the Military Medal for gallantry, although the circumstances are not recorded.
Died aged 28
George was killed in action on 24 May 1917 aged 28, but not in a major battle. He may have died in a limited enemy offensive – a typical World War I irony having survived so much combat. His body was recovered and buried at Unicorn Cemetery, Vendhuile.
Brother on the war memorial
George’s younger brother John Henry Gare was killed in action at the end of 1917, and is also listed on the church war memorial.