Search

A life spent fighting for his country

10:43 17 March 2014

Ted Pack holds some of his grandfather's First World War medals.

Ted Pack holds some of his grandfather's First World War medals.

Archant

As a child, Ted Pack had always been told his grandfather was a born soldier.

He hadn’t realised what that meant until he began to research his family history, unearthing information about a man who had lived and died in the military.

Ted Pack's grandfather,Henry Edward Pack, in his militar uniform at the age of 25.Ted Pack's grandfather,Henry Edward Pack, in his militar uniform at the age of 25.

Henry Edward Pack was born in Gibraltar in 1877, the son of a soldier, William Pack, and his wife Hannah.

When they were old enough, Henry and his older brother, also named William, were sent to study at the Duke of York’s Military Asylum in Chelsea.

“It was a military school,” explained Ted, 69, “even though it was called an asylum.

“He spent all his childhood training to be a soldier, and when he left school he enlisted in the army.”

A certificate issued in the 25th of September 1914 by the Ministry of Pensions address to Henry Pack's vidow after his death.A certificate issued in the 25th of September 1914 by the Ministry of Pensions address to Henry Pack's vidow after his death.

The school was established in 1803 and was intended to educate the children of soldiers. In 1909, it relocated to Dover, where it still exists today called the Duke of York’s Royal Military School.

After leaving the school, Henry and William joined the same regiment as their father, the King’s Own Fourth Battalion Infantry.

“My grandfather fought for them for about 20 years before joining the reserves.

“About two years after he left them, he was called up to fight in the First World War.”

Some of Ted Pack grandfather's war medals.Some of Ted Pack grandfather's war medals.

Corporal Pack, as he was then, lost his life aged 39 on March 27, 1917.

He was buried at Sarigol Military Cemetary in Kriston, Greece. His widow Mildred was given a map with his grave marked on but the family could not afford to visit it.

It wasn’t until recently that any of Henry’s family visited the grave. Ted’s son James, 27, made the trip to Kriston where he took a rubbing of the gravestone to bring home.

Despite travelling the world fighting for their country, the Packs have several generations of links to the borough.

“My great-grandfather is recorded as living in West Ham in the 1888 census,” said Ted, who lives in Plaistow.

Henry Pack is also recorded as having a home in Canning Town at the time of his death.

He left behind a son, also named Henry, who was the third generation of the family to join the military.

He was part of the Kent Guards during the Second World War.

“My mother and I used to go and visit him sometimes,” said Ted.

“The first toy I remember having was an elephant made by German prisoners of war.”

0 comments

Latest Newham News Stories

Yesterday, 17:42

Newham-born Olympic gold medallist Christine Ohuruogu is encouraging residents to get active as part of a free initiative to improve the borough’s fitness.

Yesterday, 17:39

A consultation has started into extending the 388 bus route between Stratford City bus station and Blackfriars to Elephant and Castle, following the existing route of the 100.

Yesterday, 16:03

A new cafe has opened after its owner decided to move from computers to coffee.

Yesterday, 15:21

Hundreds of people have voiced their support for a much-loved cafe after its owner said he could not afford new rent costs.

Elizabeth Olympic Park

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Read more

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Read more

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now