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Eric was born in 1893 in Arnold, the son of Henry a hosiery manager and Kate Mary Ann Cooke née Rushton of 2 Gordon Road, Mapperley, Nottingham. His father Henry was born in 1858 in St Marys Nottingham and his mother Kate Mary Ann Rushton was born in 1857 in Newark, they were married in 1880 in Nottingham and went on to have the following children all of whom were born in Arnold, they were :- Edith b1881, Ethel Ellen b182, Henry Rushton b1884, James Sanders b1885, Lavinia Rushton b1889,Arthur Rushton b1891,Eric Rushton b1893, and Eleanor May b1899 The 1911 Census shows the family living at 10 Waldeck Road, Carrington and are shown as Harry 53 yrs a hosiery manager he is living with his wife Kate Mary Ann 54 yrs and three of their children , Lavinia Rushton 22 yrs a lace worker, Eric has no occupation is 18 yrs of age and Eleanor May 12 yrs a scholar. His mother Kate died in 1914 in Nottingham she was 57 yrs of age.
Educated at Mundella School, Meadows, Nottingham. Mundella Magazine, Christmas 1918, ROH: Cooke, Eric Rushton, Crpl, Leicesters
25 Oct 1914
1641942 - CWGC Website
Lance Corporal
1st Bn Leicestershire Regiment
Eric enlisted in Leicester on 1st December 1912, he gave his place of birth as Arnold and his residence as Mapperley, Nottingham he gave his occupation as that of a joiner. He served with the 1st battalion Leicestershire Regiment and was killed in action on 25th October 1914, he has no identified grave and his name is commemorated at Ploegsteert Memorial, Belgium
Death notice published 20th November 1914 in the Nottingham Evening Post :- “COOKE. – Killed in action on the 9th inst., Lance-Corporal Eric Rushton Cooke, 1st Batt. Leicestershire Regiment, youngest son of Harry and the late Kate (Kitty) Cooke, 2 Gordon-road, Mapperley.” Article published 11th December 1914 in the Nottingham Daily Express :- MUNDELLA SCHOOL. “Tribute to Old Boys who Died for Their Country. “Another year of excellent and effective educational work was terminated yesterday [10th December 1914] at the Mundella School, Nottingham, the occasion being marked by the annual assembly of parents and scholars at the distribution of prizes won during year. Mr. A. Middleton presided over a crowded attendance, and Mrs. Field, wife of the vicar of St Mary's, distributed the prises. “The old scholars have made a noble response to the country's call, so that it was fitting that in his annual report the headmaster (Mr. J. A. Jones) should have taken the opportunity of paying tribute to his former students. “Speaking of the war, he remarked: “I am glad to say our old boys generally have answered the call of duty, and there are at least 200 who have joined the colours since the outbreak of war. We know of three who have already lost their lives in fighting for their country. One, Jesse Atkin, whom many of you here knew well, a lieutenant in the Sherwood Foresters, was killed in action in Belgium on November 20th. He was a fine fellow in every way, and we sympathise with his parents, but we feel proud of him and of the sacrifice he made for his country. “Sacrificed a Professorship. “Another old scholar,” said the headmaster, “was Edward Rushton Cook, [a] corporal in the Coldstream Guards, who was killed in action, while Alfred Day,of the Royal Engineers, died of his wounds at Boulogne about three weeks ago. One old boy declined a professorship in English literature at Rangoon University for a lieutenancy in the army. “Altogether, our old boys are worthily upholding the traditions of their country and the honour of their school.” (Applause.)” His brother Petty Officer James Sanders Cooke, Royal Navy also served during the 'Great War' and was awarded the Albert Medal. (see article below) article published 8th November 1918 in the Nottingham Journal and Express :- “WON ALBERT MEDAL. “NOTTINGHAM SAILOR’S BRAVERY AT SEA. “Many people in the Arnold and Mapperley districts (where he formerly lived) will learn with pleasure that First-class Petty-officer James Sanders Cooke, Yeoman of Signals, has been awarded the Albert Medal for saving life at sea. He one of the four sons of Mr. Henry Cooke, Mansfield-road, Sherwood, who are serving or have served their country. Pte. Eric Cooke, the youngest boy, was killed in France four years ago. Petty-officer Cooke has seen a good deal of active service. He took part in some of the operations at the Dardanelles and Jutland, and he dived into the sea to save comrades when the risk was very great.” Above are courtesy of Jim Grundy and his facebook pages Small Town Great War Hucknall 1914-1918
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