Owen Glendower HOWELL-PRICE DSO, MC, MID

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HOWELL-PRICE, Owen Glendower

Service Number: Officer
Enlisted: 16 September 1914, Sydney, New South Wales
Last Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
Last Unit: 3rd Infantry Battalion
Born: Kiama, New South Wales, Australia, 23 February 1890
Home Town: Balmain, Leichhardt, New South Wales
Schooling: Windsor Grammar School & Kogarah High School, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation: Farmer
Died: GSW to neck at Flers, France, 36th Casualty Clearing Station, France, 4 November 1916, aged 26 years
Cemetery: Heilly Station Cemetery
Heilly Station Cemetery (Plot V, Row A, Grave No. 14), Mericourt-L-Abbe, France
Memorials: Municipality Of Waterloo Roll of Service No. 1
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World War 1 Service

16 Sep 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Sydney, New South Wales
20 Oct 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Second Lieutenant, SN Officer, 3rd Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
20 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Second Lieutenant, SN Officer, 3rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Euripides, Sydney
4 Aug 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Captain, 3rd Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
24 Feb 1916: Honoured Military Cross, The August Offensive - Lone Pine, Suvla Bay, Sari Bair, The Nek and Hill 60 - Gallipoli, 'For conspicuous gallantry on 7th August 1915, in the attack on Lone Pine, Gallipoli Peninsula. He showed the greatest bravery in leading an attack against the Turkish trenches, frequently rallying his men under heavy fire, and restoring order at critical moments. He killed three Turks with his own hands.' Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 28 Date: 24 February 1916
12 May 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Lieutenant Colonel, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Battle for Pozières
29 Jun 1917: Honoured Companion of the Distinguished Service Order, Mouquet Farm, In July and August that year he fought at Pozieres and Mouquet Farm in France, Somme, where he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No 103 Date: 29 June 1917

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Biography

"...Lieutenant Colonel Owen Glendower Howell-Price DSO MC. LT COL Howell-Price was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the 3rd Battalion and subsequently served at Gallipoli where he won the Military Cross and was Mentioned in Despatches. During July and August 1916 he fought at Pozieres and Moquet Farm, France, where he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order and was again Mentioned in Despatches. He died of wounds on 4 Novemeber 1916 near Flers, France." - SOURCE (www.awm.gov.au)

"Owen was born on 23 February 1890 at Kiama and was educated at Windsor Grammar School and Kogarah High School. A bank clerk before beginning training in agriculture at the Government Experiment Farm at Nyngan, he served for a period in the citizen forces and on 27 August 1914 was commissioned second lieutenant in the 3rd Battalion, A.I.F. The battalion left Sydney in October and arrived in Egypt in December. During this time he was appointed assistant adjutant and when the adjutant was killed on the first day of the Gallipoli landing he succeeded him. He was promoted captain on 4 August 1915. During the fighting at Lone Pine he won the Military Cross and was also mentioned in dispatches. Casualties were heavy and on 5 September he was promoted temporary major and assumed temporary command of the battalion. He was wounded on 9 September but remained on duty. Having revealed his ability as a fine trainer and organizer, Owen was confirmed in rank on 1 December. For a short period in Egypt after the evacuation he was temporarily superseded in command.

The 3rd Battalion arrived in France on 28 March 1916 and Owen was promoted lieutenant-colonel on 12 May. In July and August the battalion fought bloody battles at Pozières and Mouquet Farm during which time Howell-Price set a magnificent example of courage, always visiting the most forward positions. For his leadership he was awarded the D.S.O. and mentioned in dispatches again. On 3 November 1916, near Flers, he was shot in the head and he died next day. His last words were 'Give my love to the battalion'. He was buried at Ancre-side Wood, and a commemorative service was held at Flesselles attended by the whole unit. Probably because of his youth, Owen Howell-Price took his responsibilities too seriously to be popular with his officers and men, but underlying his sternness and austerity was a deep and single-minded loyalty to his unit." - SOURCE (adb.anu.edu.au)

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Biography contributed by Evan Evans

From François Berthout

Lt Col Owen Glendower Howell-Price 

Today, in the cemeteries of the north of France, rest in peace my boys of the Somme, under the resplendent sun and the light autumnal breeze which under his fingers, caresses the red poppies which bloom on the grave and the old battlefields on which fought millions of young men who came from very far for France for which they gave their courage, their youth and their lives, they served and fell together,in silence and in eternal remembrance, they rest together on lands that will always be theirs, they have become our boys, and here in France, this country will always be theirs and we will always watch over them with the respect and love they deserve and today, it is with deep gratitude that I would like to honor one of these men, I would like to pay a very respectful tribute to Lieutenant Colonel Owen Glendower Howell-Price who fought in the 3rd Australian Infantry Battalion and who died of his wounds 104 years ago, on November 4, 1916 at the age of 26 on the Somme front.

Owen Glendower Howell-Price was born 23 February 1890 in Kiama New South Wales to Reverend John and Isabella Virginia (nee Winchcombe) Howell-Price. He was educated at Windsor Grammar School then Kogarah High School. He was working as a farmer at the Government Experiment Farm at Nyngan,New South Wales and lived in St Mary's Rectory, East Balmain, New South Wales.

Owen had previously been a lieutenant in the New South Wales cadets when he enlisted in the Australian Imperial Forces on 27 August 1914.He was appointed as second lieutenant and assigned to the 3rd Battalion. He along with his unit embarked from Sydney on the HMAT Euripides on the 20th October 1914 as part of the first convoy.

He was with the 3rd Battalion when they landed at Gallipoli on the 25 April 1915. He was rewarded for his part in the action by being made the adjunct of the unit and shortly after on 2 May 1915 promoted to lieutenant. He partook in the attack on Lone Pine at Gallipoli on 7 August 1915 having recently being made a captain on 4 August 1915. For his part in the battle he was Mentioned in Despatches and earned the Military Cross for"showing the greatest bravery in leading an attack against the Turkish trenches, frequently rallying his men under heavy fire and restoring order at critical moments."

In September of 1915 as the previous commander of the 3rd battalion, Lieutenant Colonel David McFie McConaghy, had been sent to hospital in Mudros, Howell-Price was temporally given the rank of Major and the command of the 3rd Battalion. It was during this time that he was wounded in action but remained on duty with his men and stayed on the peninsula until the evacuation of the unit in December 1915.

In May 1916 Howell-Price was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and given permanent command of the 3rd Battalion on the Western Front. In July and August that year he fought at Pozieres and Mouquet Farm in France,Somme, where he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order and was again Mentioned in Despatches.

Unfortunately, three months later, on November 3, 1916, near Flers, Somme, Owen met his fate and was shot in the head, he died the next day, November 4, 1916 and his last words were "Give my love to the battalion ", he was 26 years old.

Today, Lieutenant Colonel Owen Glendower Howell-Price rests in peace with his men whom he loved dearly as well as with his comrades and brothers in arms at Heilly Station Cemetery, Mericourt-l'Abbe, Somme.

Owen Glendower Howell-Price had two brothers who fought and were killed in action Major Philip Llewellyn Howell-Price fought in the 1st Australian Infantry Battalion and was killed in action at Broodseinde, Belgium on October 4, 1917 at the age of 23,he has no known grave and is commemorated at the Menin Gate Memorial in Ypres.

Second Lieutenant Richmond Gordon Howell-Price fought in the 1st Australian Infantry Battalion and was killed in action at the age of 20 at Bullecourt and he rests in peace at Vraucourt Cops Cemetery, Vaulx-Vraucourt, Nord Pas De Calais.

Owen, sir, in those lands of the Somme on which you and your men rest in peace, we do not forget what each of you has done for us, you who were young and brave, man with a very big heart and a very valuable officer, you have served your country with determination and perseverance and you led your men into battle with admirable courage on the worst battlefields of the great war, from Gallipoli to the Somme, you have never ceased to fight alongside your men who saw in you more than a competent and courageous officer, they saw in you a father when you were so young, but you showed them the most beautiful example to follow, an example of courage and your men followed you, I am sure, with great pride and confidence through the rain of bullets and the hailstones of shells, in the mud and in the blood, in the water flooding the trenches and the shell holes , they kept moving forward following your footsteps all as I follow yours today to find out who you were and what you did here in the Somme, on these fields of poppies that cover the traces of hell that you and your men had been going through day and night under the infernal roar of the cannons which rained down death and destruction and through the whistling of the bullets which flew around you and which brought down your men who faced hell on earth by your side on overturned soils, plowed by the steel of the shells and the iron of the barbed wire, they fought, brave but sometimes terrified by these horrors, they never backed down, they moved forward and faced the murderous fire of the machine guns, you who were so young did your duty in from your bravery and your love, until your last breath was for your battalion and for your men whom you had the honor to lead with courage, you did everything you could for them but also for your country and for France which will never forget you. our gratitude and our respect will always be equal to your courage and your sacrifice, we will always watch over you with the same devotion and the same love with which you have served your country and your name, for all eternity, will never cease to live on in the flame of remembrance and in our hearts. Thank you Owen, from the bottom of my heart,you will never be forgotten. 

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