Frank White lived at Mortimer’s Farm with his parents, sister and four brothers. As a farmer’s son he, like his brothers, helped out and worked the farm too.
When war broke out Frank, along with two of his brothers: Frederick and Alfred, enlisted with Frank becoming a private in the Queen’s Royal West Surrey Regiment (11th Battalion). During 1916 his regiment was involved in ‘The Battle of Flers-Courcelette’ and ‘The Battle of the Transloy Ridges’ where Frank was to be killed in action: dying of wounds he had received – his brothers survived the war.
The news of Frank’s death tolled heavily upon his mother who never quite recovered from the shock of losing her son. Emily White died a few years later and the loss was reported in the local newspaper:
“Death of Mrs. E. White. – The greatest sympathy is felt for Mr. E. White, of Mortimer’s Farm, Cliffe, in the irreparable loss he has sustained by the death of his wife, which occurred at their residence on Monday, 11th, at the comparatively early age of forty-three. The deceased lady suffered a severe shock by the loss of her second son, Frank, who died from wounds in France in the latter part of 1916, and her health had gradually given way. Another son was home on leave at the time of her death. The funeral took place in Cliffe parish churchyard on Monday afternoon, the remains being followed to the grave by her husband, sons, and other relatives. The Rev. A. T. Wallis (rector) impressively conducted the service. The coffin was covered with handsome floral tributes from the bereaved husband, sons, relatives and friends. The funeral arrangements were carried out by Messrs. George Gates and Sons, at Frindsbury.”