b. 19/10/1907 33 Richard St, Rochdale, Lancashire. d. 06/05/1976 Rochdale, Lancashire.
DATE AND PLACE OF GC ACTION: 10/07/1926 Rochdale.
Robert “Bob” Wild was born in Rochdale, Lancashire on 19 October 1907, the son of Robert Wild and his wife Alice (nee Ogden). His father was employed locally as a dyer at Highams. The eldest of seven children, young Robert was raised in the Halfpenny Canal Basin area of the town and was educated at the Parish Church School in Tweedale Street.
Aged 14 he found employment as an apprentice electrician at Dunlop Cotton Mills at Sudden in the south-west of Rochdale, one of the world’s largest cotton mills with a high demand for electricity. He was 19 years old and working at Dunlop Cotton Mills when a fire broke out, caused by arcing at the switchboard in a sub station. His work colleague Edward Matthews’ clothes caught fire and Wild immediately set about extinguishing the flames with his bare hands. He was admitted to Rochdale Infirmary and it was sometime before he was able to return home.
Duly recovered, Wild was invested with his E.G.M. by King George V at Buckingham Palace on 17 February 1927; he would return to the same venue to receive his G.C. from King George VI on 21 February 1942, by which stage, owing to the war, he was working in the armaments industry.
Wild married Sarah Carey at Rochdale Parish Church in December 1938 and the couple lived at Brimrod Lane; after the war, she ran an off-licence in Barton Street, Rochdale, her husband assisting her in the evenings on returning from work; he had returned to his job at Dunlops and remained similarly employed until his retirement in 1972.
Wild, who was a keen angler and member of the Dunlop Rifle Club, died at his home in Oldham Road, Rochdale on 6 May 1976; he was cremated and his ashes interred in his grandparents’ grave in Rochdale Cemetery.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: SOLD AT AUCTION ON 08/09/2015 FOR £8,000 – UNKNOWN BIDDER
BURIAL PLACE: ROCHDALE CEMETERY, ROCHDALE, LANCASHIRE.
ASHES SCATTERED ON GRANDPARENTS GRAVE – PLOT VI, GRAVE 33739
Dix Noonan Webb – Images of the Wild GC Medal Group.