Born in Thame in 1890, Sam Howlett was one of 7 children to William George, and Mahala Howlett. In 1901 he was living in Southern Road where his father was a beer-house keeper and coach-smith at the “Hole in the Wall” beer-house.
By 1911 he had moved to Pangbourne, employed as a grocers assistant, before enlisting with the Royal Berkshire (Princess Charlotte of Wales) Regiment. Posted to the 8th Battalion, he disembarked in France in October 1915, and would have seen action in several battles, including the 1916 Somme offensive.
In December of 1916, he was serving with B Company, when they were in frontline trenches around Warlencourt, a few kilometres south west of Bapaume. It was as a result of wounds received there, on 4th December that he died at the 45th Casualty Clearing Station in Dernancourt, near Albert on 6th December 1916. His grave is in the nearby Dernancourt Communal Cemetery Extension.
His sister May was awarded his accrued pay and war gratuity totalling £9 15s.
In Thame Sam Howlett is remembered on the town War Memorial, and also on the memorial boards for St Mary’s and All Saints churches.
The Thame Remembers Cross was delivered to Dernancourt Communal Cemetery Extension, Somme, France on 18th April 2015 by Patsy Baker