Jack Counter

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Jack Counter

Jack Counter VC.jpg

Jack Counter, who came to live in Jersey after Army service, was known affectionately as 'Jersey's VC'

Jack Counter on parade in Jersey's Royal Square holding the Royal British Legion standard

Jack Counter VC 1898-1970

Jack Thomas Counter was born on 3 November 1898 in Blandford Forum, Dorset.

He was 19 years old, and a private in the 1st Battalion, The King's (Liverpool) Regiment, during the First World War when he was awarded the VC.

The son of Frank and Rosina Counter, he attended Blandford National School.

Front line

On 16 April 1918 near Boisieux St Marc, France, it was necessary for information to be obtained from the front line and the only way to get it was across open ground over some 250 metres with no cover and in full view of the enemy. A small party tried without success, followed by six men, singly, each one being killed in the attempt. Private Counter then volunteered and, going out under terrific fire, got through and returned with vital information which enabled his commanding officer to organise and launch the final successful counter-attack. Subsequently he also carried five messages across the open under heavy artillery barrage to company headquarters. He was also awarded the Imperial Service Medal.

In 1919 his regiment came to Jersey on garrison duty and when he was demobilised in 1921 with the rank of corporal he returned to the island to work as a postman for three years.

He left the island to work for the General Post Office in Sunbury on Thames for five years, but returned once more and married Ada Vauvert. They settled at First Tower. The island adopted him and he became known locally as 'Jersey's VC'. He was a popular member of the local branch of the Royal British Legion. He served on the committee and was the bearer of the King’s Standard at ceremonial parades.

He died in Blandford Forum on 17 September 1970 while visiting his sister-in-law, his wife and daughter having predeceased him.

His ashes are interred at St Saviour’s Parish Church

His Victoria Cross is on public display in the Jersey Museum.

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