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The Channel Islands and the Great War
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Howard, R V

Savona Memorial, Italy

Savona Memorial, Genoa, Italy

Notice of Death appears in Jersey Evening Post of Thursday 19 July 1917

NEWS ITEM In Jersey Evening Post of Monday 26 October 1914

Loyal Jersey - More of its Sons Leave for Active Service. The number of young men who in response to Lord Kitchener's appeal are enlisting in the Army shows no sign of slackening locally. In fact there was a notable increase this morning when a number of Jerseymen left by the Mailboat to join the Regular Army. Amongst these was Scout R Howard who is joining the Royal Army Medical Corps.


NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Tuesday 27 October 1914

Boy Scout for Active Service. Amongst the recruits who left the Island this morning to join the Army was Patrol Leader Robert (Bob) Howard of the 1st Jersey St Simons Troop, who has enlisted in the Royal Army Medical Corps. The above troop of Boy Scouts has always been noted for the number of its lads who join the Navy and Army and at the present time no less than 22 of its members are on active service in both branches of the services. Lord Kitchener, in his appeal to Scouts, reminded the boys "once a Scout always a Scout" and we feel certain that this lad, whilst on active service, will live up to their motto of "Be Prepared" and thereby reflect credit not only on himself but on his native Island. Despite the early hour a number of the relatives and friends of the lad were on the quay this morning to wish him au revoir. Before stepping on board he was each presented, by Scout Master G Le Cocq, with a Scouts Swastika Badge as a souvenir of his connection with the Troop and as a token of the officials best wishes for his future career.


Commemorated on:
St Mark's Church Memorial, Jersey
and on Old Boys of St Mark's Company Boys Brigade Memorial, Jersey

Commonwealth War Graves Commission Record


Private Robert Vernon Howard
Royal Army Medical Corps

1914-15 Star

Son of Edgar & Ada Howard of 52 Garden Lane, St Helier, Jersey
One of two brothers who both fell. Brother of Private Edgar Thomas Howard.

Died at sea on a troopship, aged 19 years


NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Monday 26 April 1915

From Neuve Chapelle. Amongst the passengers landing yesterday from the mail steamer was Private R V Howard of the Royal Army Medical Corps, who was wounded in the neck at Neuve Chapelle. We are pleased to learn that this gallant lad's wounds are now practically healed.

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Thursday 24 May 1917

Roll of Honour. Mr & Mrs E Howard of 52 Garden Lane, the former a well-known local postman, were distressed last evening to receive a telegram from the Record Office stating that their son, Private R V Howard of the Royal Army Medical Corps, was missing and believed drowned on 4 May last. Bob Howard, as this popular young soldier was generally known, was 19 and was formerly a Patrol Leader in the 1st Jersey St Simons Troop of Boy Scouts. He enlisted shortly after the outbreak of hostilities and had seen considerable service, twice in the Egyptian scene of warfare and also in France where he was wounded. He was keen on returning to Egypt and the last news received from him was dated 3 May from Marseilles, it is therefore presumed that he met his death whilst in the Mediterranean. Of a genial disposition Bob Howard was held in the highest regard by all he had come into contact with. He will also be remembered as a prominent athlete and had achieved considerable success as a boxer. There is, of course, a slight chance that this soldier may have been picked up by a passing vessel which has not yet been able to report, but the official message does not hold out much hope. We feel sure that the sympathy of all our readers will be extended to the bereaved parents and relatives in their sorrow.

NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Tuesday 17 July 1917

The Late Private Howard - Body Found on Spanish Coast. The parents of Private R V Howard of the Royal Army Medical Corps who was missing believed drowned in the sinking of the transport "Transylvania" on 4 May last have received official notification that His Majesty's Consul at Barcelona reports that their son's body was found on the beach 3 kilometres from Port Fancos approaching San Carlos de la Rapide on 22 June last and was buried at the spot.


NEWS ITEM in Jersey Evening Post of Friday 19 March 1915

Gallant Jersey Lad Wounded at Neuve Chapelle Recommended for Conspicuous Bravery. Mr & Mrs E C Howard of Garden Lane have received news that their son, Private R V Howard, who enlisted in the Royal Army Medical Corps from the 1st Jersey St Simons Troop of Boy Scouts before Christmas, has been wounded in action and after being moved to Boulogne is now at St Anselm Hospital in Kent. By a strange coincidence when the young soldier arrived at the Front he met Gunner H Robinson, the well known athlete of the RGA, who before leaving for active service was a neighbour in Jersey and from the latter and others the parents have been able to gather news of the gallant deed which their son performed and through which he received his wounds and has been recommended for bravery. It appears that Private Howard was on duty in the trenches near Neuve Chapelle and when the men of his Corps intended retiring to be replaced by others the Germans commenced bombarding the trenches, making it very uncomfortable for the occupants and impossible for them to return. Captain P Ryan, the Officer in Charge, asked for a volunteer and Private Howard went off to report to the Major at the Aid Post. Off he dashed amidst the shrapnel and "Johnsons" and managed to reach the Post unhurt to find that the Major had been shelled out and had retired to the hospital at Estaires. Finding a mule left by the transport the Jersey lad mounted this but the animal gave out after 30 yards and he had to run on until he came across a cycle at Rouge Croix, and by means of this and through a motor ambulance he managed to reach the hospital. He then returned with the relief party but was wounded in the ear and neck when entering the trench by a "little Willie". The Gunner states that all the officers and men are loud in their praise for the gallantry displayed by Private Howard and that he had been recommended for conspicuous bravery. After an operation the shrapnel has been removed and the last letter states that the wounded soldier is quite cheerful, is making a rapid recovery and hopes soon to be on sick leave in the Island. We join the young soldier's many friends in wishing him a speedy recovery and also congratulate him on his gallantry which we hope will be suitably rewarded.

SS Transylvania was sunk by U-63 whilst en-route from Marseilles to Alexandria on 4th May 1917.


More details


Some editing of the press reports has taken place to focus on the individual referred to

Photographs courtesy of Ken Rathgeber from