Ernest David Filewood
81st Field Company Royal Engineers
Known to me only by his initials E.D.F. for many years it has been possible to discover not only rank and regiment from the CWGC website but also details of his service history from Ancestry UK including his full name. His initials appear on a small flower holder in the Reading Cemetery and there is an inscription stating that E.D.F died a prisoner of war. The Berkshire Family History Society classification is 2E3.
In July 2016 this web site was contacted by Sapper Filewood’s great great nephew, Dean Fostekew, who has been able to supply further information. Sapper Filewood is standing in the back row of the photograph, second on the right and hat-less. Ernest David was the youngest of five children of David and Henrietta (nee Rose) Filewood. His siblings were Eliza, Phoebe, Fred and George. Phoebe was Dean’s great grandmother.
Sapper E.D. Filewood died on the 23rd October 1918. Aged 30 years. He is buried in the Tournai Communal Cemetery Extension, Tournai, Hainaut, Belgium. The grave location is II.J.33. The area of Tournai was in German hands for most of the war years 23 August 1914 until 8 November 1918 and is a concentration cemetery for small numbers of burials made in the surrounding area as well as a later casualty clearing station and hospital. There are many prisoner of war graves including a large contingent of Russian graves.
By trade E.D.F. was a monumental mason. He attested in December 1915 and was posted to the Royal Engineers in May 1916. E.D.F. was posted missing on 10 April 1918 but sent a post card home on 20 April 1918 indicating that he was a prisoner of war. His war record indicates that his death was due to cardiac weakness during his capture.
E.D.F. was married to L. V. (Lizzie Violet nee Saunders) on 18 January 1913 and they lived at 44, Edgehill Street, Reading. He left a daughter called Phyllis born on 23 June 1915. His wife remarried becoming Lizzie Violet Elphee and it is that name which appears on the CWGC register.