Edgar Joseph Howard
From Our Contribution
|Date of Birth||25 June 1912|
|Place of Birth||Armadale, Western Australia|
|Death||1 July 1943|
|Place of Death||Kanu II Malayan Hamlet|
|Age at Enlistment||28 years, 1 month|
|Occupation||WAGR Ticket Inspector|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||179 Spences street, South Bunbury|
|Next of Kin||Wife , Elsie Beryl Howard|
|Date of Enlistment||10 August 1940|
|Unit/Formation||6 Platoon, A Company, 2/4th Australian Machine Gun Battalion|
|Date of Embarkation||16 January 1942 ‒ 30 January 1942|
|Ship Embarked On||HMT Aquitania Fremantle to Singapore|
Died from Cholera
WA State War Memorial
Australian War Memorial
The Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial Ballarat, Victoria
Australian Service Medal 1939-45 |
War Medal 1939-45
Australian Service Medal 1939-45
‘Tim’ Howard married Elsie Beryl Pickersgill in 1932 in the Wellington district. They had two children. The youngest, son Peter John Howard born in 1939 tragically died in 1944 aged 5 years. Peter’s father unknown to the family had already died of cholera in Thailand. Elsie remarried in 1950 however was again widowed in 1972. She died at Bunbury in 1992 aged 79 years.
Entered Claremont camp on 10 Aug 1940, and six days later was sent to the Melville Training Depot. Transferred to Northam's No 3 Depot Battalion on 2 Sep 1940 where he was promoted on 1 Oct 1940 to Lance Corporal, and on 2 Nov 1940 to Acting Corporal. On 4 Dec 1940 he was transferred to the 2/4th Australian Machine Gun Battalion. Granted 7 day's pre-embarkation leave from 1 Jul 1941, and on 21 Jul 1941 the unit boarded the HMT Duntroon in Fremantle and relocated to Southern Command in South Australia arriving there on 25 Jul 1941. There, on 7 Aug 1941 he was appointed Acting Lance Sergeant in 6 Platoon, 'A' Company. On 1 Oct 1941 the unit entrained for Darwin which was reached on 20 Oct 1941. Promoted to Acting Sergeant on 31 Oct 1941.
Embarked on the HMT Aquitania for overseas on 30 Dec 1941, disembarking at Singapore on 24 Jan 1942. On 29 Jan 1942 his rank of Sergeant was confirmed before he was hospitalised in the 2/13th Australian General Hospital from 12 - 20 Feb 1942 having suffered shell shock at Ulu Pandan. On 15 Feb 1942 he and the hospital were captured by the Japanese, with Australian sources posting him as Missing in Action on 16 Feb 1942.
During captivity he had been held at Selarang Camp Changi; Mount Pleasant Camp; River Valley Road Camp; and Selang Barracks Changi. On 31 Mar 1942 with POW No. 3/6204 he entered the 2/13th Australian General Hospital with dysentery and was not released until 5 Apr 1942. Readmitted from 26 Feb 1943 until 24 Apr 1943, this time with neuritis, he was on 8 May 1943 entrained for Thailand as part of "H" Force, No. 3 Battalion. Edgar died on 1 Jul 1943, aged 31 from Cholera on 1 Jul 1943 in Kanu II, Malaysian Hamlet, but this was not confirmed until 3 Oct 1945.
His remains were exhumed from Kangas No. 2 Cemetery on 29 Apr 1946 and reburied in the Kanchanaburi War Cemetery Thailand - Collective grave 10. F. 2-10. L. 4. (just south of the Bridge on the River Kwai).