(L to R) British War Medal; Allied Victory Medal
Joseph was born on the 16th April 1899 in Wem, Shropshire. His father was called Thomas and his mother was Sarah Ann. He had 2 older siblings: William Healy and Edith May, and 3 younger: Myra Elizabeth, Gertrude Annie and Frederick George.
Thomas worked for a brewer and in 1901 the family lived at 18 Chapel Street in Wem. By 1911 they had moved a short distance to 21 Chapel Street. Thomas now worked as a carter for a contractor. We don't know what sort of work they did.
The First World War broke out in August 1914 and Joseph became eligible to join the Army when he turned 18 in April 1917. We don't know exactly when he was enlisted, or whether he volunteered or was conscripted. He was assigned to the Manchester Regiment and given the service number 63056.
At this point in the war men could be sent to any unit that needed soldiers and this could explain why Joseph joined the Manchester Regiment. We don't know which Battalion he served with.
At some point Joseph was transferred to an unknown battalion of the Northumberland Fusiliers. This meant he was given a new service number: 66077. We don't know anything about his Army service.
Joseph survived the war, and we believe he returned to Shropshire. He died between January and March 1978 in or near Shrewsbury. He was 78 years old. His medals were donated to the Museum of the Manchester Regiment in October 1999.