Born Dalton le Dale in 1884, The 1911 census shows that he was widower living at 35 Mount Pleasant New Seaham with Henry and Ellen Hair with their 3daughters and 2 sons. Ellen was the Mother of John. John was employed as a hewer at the Murton Colliery
Following his marriage January 1st 1914 to Sarah Wilson they resided at 2, St Andrews Terrace, Dalton le Dale with their daughter Irene Lorraine.
John enlisted into the Durham Light Infantry on the 7th December 1914 aged 30 years at Sunderland.
His military history indicates he spent 278 days at home and 15days in France. Sarah together with Irene Lorraine moved into 57 Albion Street Murton Colliery. Correspondence from War Office in London informs Sarah that she has been awarded a pension of 15/- a week for herself and child with effect from the 5th June 1916
15th Service Battalion Durham Light Infantry formed in September 1914 as part of K3 and came under orders of 64th Brigade in 21st Division. Landed in Boulogne 11th September 1915
The Battle of Loos was part of the wider Third Battle of Artois, September 25th saw the start of the Second Battle of Champagne. The attack was preceded by a four day bombardment and would see the first use of poisoned gas by the British. The Chlorine gas was released at 5.50am giving it forty minutes to do it’s work before the infantry attacked at 6.30. Unfortunately much of the gas either lingered in no mans land or drifted back over the British lines. By the end of the 25th September the British had advanced to within a thousand yards of the German second line to the north of Loos. By the end of the Battle 21st and 24th Divisions had lost 8,000 men killed or wounded. This part of the fighting became known as the ‘Corpse ground of Loos.