Charles Thomas James Nicholas Howard 1884-1918

230460 [also 2113] Pte 2nd (City of London) Battalion Royal Fusiliers

© R.Jones

Charles Howard was born 10 February 1884 in Evansdale, Blueskin, New Zealand. His father, James Howard of Dowlish Wake, Somerset and Ellen Perrett of Stringston had married and emigrated to New Zealand. There they had four children Catherine, Ruth (both died of diphtheria aged 5 and 3) Charles in 1884 and Gertrude born 1886.

James was killed in a mining accident in Kaitangata in 1889 when the roof of the mine where he was working fell in on him. According to a newspaper item it was an act of God, so no compensation or pension would be awarded to the widow. Therefore Ellen returned to Somerset with her two remaining children and moved in with her father, Thomas Perrett. In the 1901 census Ellen, aged 47, was living with her 78 year old father Thomas noted as a retired farmer, in 39 Cambden Road. Charles' 14 year old sister Gertrude Howard lived with them.

Charles (known as Charlie) returned to New Zealand in 1906 sailing from England and sending postcards from each port he visited on his way to New Zealand, including the Canary Islands, the Horn of Africa, Ceylon, Australia and New Zealand. He stayed in Christchurch where he worked for a while then travelled to Dunedin where he may have been selling agricultural tools. He also visited the remaining family living in the country. He also sent postcards on his return from New Zealand a few years later.

Charles was killed in action on the 6th November 1918, five days before the war ended. He drove an ambulance toward the end of the war as an orderly in the Imperial Hospital Corps and was killed when trying to rescue an injured soldier.

He is buried in the Angreau Communal Cemetery, grave location II. A. 8. His name was added to his sister's memorial in the Wembdon Road Cemetery (memorial 986), who had died only two years before. The inscription reads: In Loving Memory of Gertrude Emily the beloved wife of Reginald R Roe of East Bower who died December 14th 1916 aged 30 years. Also CJ Howard brother of the above killed in action on November 6th 1918 interred at Angreau cemetery France. Also Ellen Howard who died December 20th 1935 aged 83 years.