Christopher Davis (1898-1918) - Gnr 212982 Royal Field ArtilleryChristopher Daviswas the eldest of the two surviving children (both boys) of Frederick and Eliza Davis. Frederick was a carpenter and joiner and in the 1911 the family were living at Little Lockets in Itchingfield.Christopher was born on the 2ndJuly 1898 so would not have reached official enlistment age until summer 1916 and the required age for overseas service (19) until summer 1917. However rules were beginning to be bent. According to his number he signed up on the 14thMarch, 1917, with a group of other Sussex men, at No 3 Depot Royal Field Artillery, Hilsea.Fourdays later they were posted to No 3 Reserve Brigade, Bulford, followed by a posting to Mesopotamia on 11thSeptember 1917 (from Devonport) with the ship arriving at Magil on 19th November 1917. The men were then posted to various brigades from the Base Depot and Christopher ended up with 1068 Battery; 221 Brigade (a Howitzer brigade) which became part of the 17th Indian Division fighting the Turks.There were few military actions in the area in this period but conditions were terrible. Extremes of temperature, arid desert and regular floods together with flies, mosquitoes and other vermin all led to appalling levels of sickness and death through disease. Medical arrangements were also quite shocking, with wounded men spending up to two weeks on boats before reaching any kind of hospital. These factors, plus of course the unexpectedly determined Turkish resistance, contributed to high casualty rates. Data from "Statistics of the Military Effort of the British Empire" (London: HMSO, 1920) reported the overall statistics for the Mesopotamia Campaign as 11,012 killed; 3,985 died of wounds; 12,678 died of sickness; 13,492 missing and prisoners and 51,836 wounded.Christopher was one of the casualties dying of pneumonia in hospital at Basra after a short illness on the 8thNovember 1918 - a month after Turkey had signed the armistice. Christopher is buried in Baghdad (North Gate) War Cemetery and is rememberedon the Itchingfield War Memorial. He was awarded the Victory and British War Medals for his service..