Birkenhead News. Wednesday June 23, 1915.
South-End Soldier Sniped.
When Just About to Fire.
The sad news has reached Mrs Jellicoe, who resides at 25 Railway Rd, Rock Ferry, that her son, Private Stephen Jellicoe off the 4th battalion Cheshire regiment, but who was attached to the 5th battalion, has been killed in action. His mother has received the following letter from Lance Corporal Arthur Pardoe. He writes “with the deepest regret I write these few lines, informing you of your son’s death. This sad fatality took place on the afternoon of the fourth inst., and although we exhausted every means available, he died the death of a soldier before we could get him to a dressing station. As his section commander he interested me much, for being an athlete myself I admired his capabilities. I do not think I shall ever forget that eventful afternoon, as it registered the serious casualty of all in my section. Whilst going on my tour of duty I visited Private Jellicoe’s observation post, and at the same time exchanged a few words with him. He reported the harassing attention of a German sniper on our left and said he intended keeping a sharp look out for him. Evidently, he had located him and indulging in a careful aim he pulled the trigger, but before that bullet could have reached its mark he received one in the forehead from the gun of a sniper cleverly concealed in the grass some 80 yards away. His departure is a big loss to me, for being a strong man he made work easy, and kept up our spirits by his cheerful disposition. I can well assure you he was well liked and respected by all his comrades out here."
Private S. Jellicoe, who was 20 years of age, set sail for France on February 15th and attained his 20th birthday whilst serving. Before the war he was an apprentice driller at Messers. Cammell Laird, and Co, and was a popular local athlete, having played football for the New Ferry team.
The battalion war diary for the day simply states, 1 man died of wounds recieved in action in trenches near Ypres.