Died 24th November 1914 Age 27
On the Great War Forum there is an article about Sidney from Simon Bull. I hope he doesn't mind me including it here:
Sidney Tack was the first of the men commemorated on the Memorial of
the Harrowdens in Northamptonshire to die. It has not been possible to obtain a photograph of him, but his service records give a good description of him. In 1905, when he joined the Army he was 5
feet 5½ inches tall. However he seems to have grown and reached the height of 5 feet and 6¾ inches by the time of his discharge to the Army Reserve in 1912. This reflects the fact that he was
approximately 15, and not the 18 that he claimed to be, when he joined the Army! At 15 when he joined the Army he was a little over 8½ stone. He had a fresh complexion and blue eyes with light brown
Sidney Tack was born in approximately 1890. His father was called Charles and his mother Sarah, and Sidney had at least one sibling, a brother, who was called Charlie.
He joined the Army in 1905, enlisting at Wellingborough and describing himself as a farm labourer. Once in the Army he seems to have had an extremely chequered career. He was convicted of an offence of losing, by neglect, his equipment. His offending led to him being confined to barracks on a number of occasions, and serving periods of detention, the longest of which was 10 days.
During his initial period of service with the Northamptonshire Regiment he served abroad in Aden, in India (where records show him to have been stationed in Poona), and in Malta. In India he contracted malaria which he seems to have subsequently suffered from recurrently.
In 1912 he was serving in Malta when he was returned to the United Kingdom on the basis that he would be transferred to the Reserve upon his arrival in the United Kingdom. This was before the end of his normal term of engagement. It is not possible to say so conclusively, but there is a strong inference that the Army had "had enough" of Sidney Tack and was getting him off its hands.
At the outbreak of War, he was recalled to his Regiment and attached to the 1st Battalion. He was very rapidly sent to France and arrived in France on the 13th of August 1914.
He probably saw action in the Battle of the Aisne in mid-September 1914.
In the chaotic period of mobile warfare that took place in late October and early November 1914 the 1st Battalion War Diary was lost, and it is difficult to piece together exactly what happened to Sidney Tack. However the seriousness of the fighting which the Battalion was involved in during this period is clear from the fact that, by 16 November 1914, the Battalion's strength had been reduced from approximately 1000 men to 300 men, with only two officers left.
By mid-October 1914 the 1st Battalion Northamptonshire Regiment found itself involved in the First Battle of Ypres, in which the German advance in the Ypres area was halted. It was during this Battle, on 26 October 1914, that Sidney Tack suffered a terrible wound. Shrapnel from a shell entered his body and fractured his spine rendering him completely paraplegic.
After being wounded, Sidney Tack made his way down the chain of units treating wounded soldiers until he eventually reached a General Hospital at Boulogne. From there he was brought back to England by ship on 8 November 1914, and taken to the military hospital at Netley, near Southampton. There he died on 24 November 1914 and was buried in the cemetery at the Hospital.
He was awarded the 1914 Star, together with a clasp, the War Medal and the Victory Medal.