John Luke was the third born son of Daniel and Elizabeth Luke and was born about 1881 in Gronant, Flintshire. His older brother eleven years his senior, Joseph Luke, was the father of another fallen Brynford Soldier, John Harold Luke. In the 1891 Wales Census the family was living in Brynford.
In the 1901 Wales Census, John Edward Lukewas 20 years, single, living with his widowed mother, Elizabeth (who was head of the family) and his older brother Thomas, senior to him by nine years. They were living at Gafna Gerrig, Brynford. John’s occupation was described as being a Labourer in the quarry industry.
In the 1911 Wales Census, John Edward Luke, was 30 years old, single, living in Pull Clai, Brynford with his widowed mother and older brother Thomas who was also single. The two brothers described their occupation as Quarrymen. The property had two rooms and was occupied by the three of them.
John Luke enlisted at Flint, on 2nd April, 1917, having passed his medical for service at Wrexham, on 30th January, 1917. John indicated on his enrolment paper that the Royal Field Artillery was his preference, however he was initially, enlisted into the 4th Battalion Royal Welch Fusiliers. John was 36 years and 11 months old on enlistment, indicating his trade as being a blacksmiths striker. His home address was Limestone Cottage, Brynford. John’s next of kin was his wife, Grace (formerly Kennedy), who he had only married on 28th March 1917, in the district of Holywell. This is recorded in Marriage index 1916-2005 volume 11b, page 203.
John embarked from Southhampton, on 20th July 1917, and disembarked at Rouen the next day. He joined the base depot the following day. John was then posted to C Company 17th Battalion RWF, on 5th August 1917. John was killed in action, on 28th August 1917, aged 37. He has no known grave but is remembered on the imposing Thiepval Memorial on the Somme.
Mrs Grace Luke was awarded a pension of 13/9 a week from 11th March 1918, having no children. Grace received John’s memorial scroll and death plaque on 22nd March 1920 and finally his medals, British War and Victory medals on 6th May 1922.