Thursday, April 22, 2010

Obituary of Frank Nelson Gower of Maine and Brooklyn, New York; WWI Casualty

It's hard to fathom that this young man died on November 16, 1918 of wounds received on Nov 2, and yet his parents were not informed of his death until January 4, 1919! I hope there was an error in the article.

Note: A military record shows he was wounded November 1, 1918 and also died that day. That same record indicates he was born November 27, 1898, which conflicts with his gravestone, which gives a birth year of 1900. Perhaps he fudged in order to enlist.

These discrepancies serve to emphasize that official records and newspaper accounts, though informative and good clues, can be error-prone.

Private Gower Dies of Wounds

Private Frank N. Gower, 45th Co., 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment U.S. Marines, reported died of wounds Nov. 16, 1918, was the only son of Mr. and Mrs. W. A. Gower, formerly of Gardiner [Maine]. He was born in 1900, at Auburn [Maine]. He enlisted from the home of his parents, Brooklyn, N.Y., received his training at Paris Island, S. C., and went across in August. He was one of 22 picked men of his company for overseas duty. Private Gower was wounded Nov 2. His parents received news of his death on Jan 4, 1919.

He was Frank Nelson Gower, born at Auburn, Maine, son of William Andrew Gower and Martha Frances (Cox) Gower, who were born, according to their marriage record, at Princeton, Maine, and Portland, Maine, respectively. Martha Frances Cox' mother, Lizzie E. (Metcalf) Cox was born at Calais, Maine, near Princeton.

According to a military record, Frank served from overseas from August 27, 1918 to November 1, 1918, the date of his injury in combat in the Meuse-Argonne Offensive, which occurred from November 26, 1918 to the date of the armistice, November 11, 1918.   It's sad to think that Frank came so close to surviving the war.  This record shows his parents' address as 261 Linden Street, Brooklyn, New York.

Frank is buried with his parents and other family members at Calais Cemetery at Calais, Maine.  If you have corrections and/or additions to the information above, please leave a comment or contact me directly.

261 Linden Street, Brooklyn, New York

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