Edward John HOWELLS MC, MID

HOWELLS, Edward John

Service Number: Officer
Enlisted: 23 March 1915
Last Rank: Captain
Last Unit: 1st Field Squadron, RAE
Born: Barrow in Furness, Lancashire, England, 20 May 1882
Home Town: Canterbury, Boroondara, Victoria
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Civil Engineer
Died: Heidelberg Repatriation General Hospital, Victoria, Australia, 2 June 1959, aged 77 years, cause of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials:
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World War 1 Service

23 Mar 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Second Lieutenant, SN Officer, 23rd Infantry Battalion
10 May 1915: Embarked 23rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Euripides, Melbourne
10 May 1915: Involvement 23rd Infantry Battalion
9 May 1917: Embarked Lieutenant, 1st and 2nd Field Troops, HMAT Port Sydney, Sydney
9 May 1917: Involvement Lieutenant, 1st and 2nd Field Troops
23 May 1918: Honoured Military Cross, He 'was responsible for the bridging operations at Makhadet Hajla (River Jordon) on the night of the 21st/22nd March 1918, including careful preliminary reconnaissance for selection of site of bridge. He displayed great determination, coolness and skill in forming a bridge under fire and set a fine example to his men. Has on other occasions proved himself a most reliable and capable officer.' Commonwealth of Australia Gazette on page 890 at position 68
7 Nov 1918: Honoured Mention in Dispatches, Commonwealth of Australia Gazette 7 November 1918 on page 2113 at position 96
20 Jul 1919: Involvement AIF WW1, Captain, 1st Field Squadron, RAE

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Biography contributed by Evan Evans

From AWM

Lieutenant Edward John Howells, 23rd Battalion, of Canterbury, Vic. An engineer in civilian life, Howells enlisted as a Second Lieutenant on 23 March 1915. He embarked with B Company from Melbourne on HMAT Euripides on 10 May 1915. He served at Gallipoli, receiving a promotion to Lieutenant (Lt). Due to illnes he was invalided back to Australia in March 1916. Lt Howells re-enlisted and embarked with the 1st and 2nd Field Troops (Engineers) from Sydney on HMAT Port Sydney on 9 May 1917. During his service in the Middle East with D Field Troop (Engineers), Lt Howells was promoted to the rank of Captain (Capt) and awarded the Military Cross (MC) and Mention in Despatches (MID). The recommendation for the MC states that he 'was responsible for the bridging operations at Makhadet Hajla on the night of the 21st/22nd March 1918, including careful preliminary reconnaissance for selection of site of bridge. He displayed great determination, coolness and skill in forming a bridge under fire and set a fine example to his men. Has on other occasions proved himself a most reliable and capable officer.' Capt Howells returned to Australia with the 1st Field Squadron on 20 July 1919, and prior to WWII served in the RAAF, achieving the rank of Wing Commander.

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