Heinrich Randolph is born in Sibbesse (Lower Saxony) on 20 July 1882. Since he is the second son and his brother inherits the family farmhouse and quarters, he gets a solid education. In Alfeld he studies to be a teacher. In 1902-1903 he fulfills his intern service in Hildesheim. Afterwards he finds a position teaching. He gets acquainted with Amalie, the daughter of a tobacconist. The girl gets pregnant. To avoid any scandal, the child must be secretly brought into the world. Only after Heinrich's appointment as teacher, the couple can get married. They have four children.
Halfway in the year 1916, Heinrich Randolph is called into military service. Until April 1917 he serves as Gefreiter (corporal) in France. On 1 May of that year he receives the Iron Cross 2nd Class. Until September 1917, his unit (the 8th battery of the Reserve Field Artillery Regiment 19) is set up on the eastern front. After that the intention is to move to the region near Metz. But with an eye to the 'Flandernschlacht' (the Battle of Passendale), they shift to the Ieper Salient.
On 4 October 1917 the so-called Battle of Broodseinde rages. The Germans try to halt the British advance. Heinrich Randolph readies a cannon in the area of Beselare when a bomb hits. Seriously wounded, he is taken away to the field hospital in the convent of Moorsele; but dies that same day. He now lies buried in the German military cemetery of Menen Wald, between Menen and Wevelgem. During the war he sent dozens of letters to his wife and children; they have recently been partially published.
(Source: Characters from the Great War on http://www.inflandersfields.be)