GWB-80 L/Cpl. William Charles Fuller, VC
The first VC awarded during the first World War to a Welshman.
William Charles Fuller VC (13 March 1884 ? 29 December 1974) was the son of William and Mary Fuller of Laugharne, Carmarthen. He was born in Laugharne, West Wales, and died at the age of 90 in December 1974. Educated in Swansea, he joined the Army in 1902 during the Second Boer War. He was recalled as a reservist in 1914.
On 14 September 1914 near Chivy-sur-Aisne, France, Lance-Corporal Fuller advanced under very heavy enemy rifle and machine-gun fire to extract an officer who was mortally wounded, and carried him back to cover. Fuller won his VC for saving Captain Mark Haggard, nephew of Rider Haggard, who had fallen wounded. He carried him a distance estimated at 100 yards to a ridge where he managed to dress the officer’s wounds. Capt Haggard asked L/Cpl Fuller to fetch his rifle from where he’d fell. He did not want the enemy to get it. Fuller managed to do this.
With the help of two others, Private Snooks and Lieutenant Melvin, Officer i/c the machine-gun section of the Welsh Regiment, they managed to get Haggard to the safety of a barn that was being used as a First-Aid dressing station.
L/Cpl Fuller remained with Captain Haggard trying to help him until the officer died later on that evening. His last words to Fuller were “Stick it, Welsh.” After he’d died L/Cpl Fuller attended to two other officers who had also been brought to the barn wounded. (Lt. The Hon Fitzroy Somerset and Lt. Richards.) The barn came under heavy fire and the wounded men and officers were evacuated. Later it was razed to the ground with German shell-fire.