Rank or Title
Date of Birth
Date of Death
31 Oct 1918
Media files and documents
Place of Birth
World War I Address
Place of Death
War Memorial Location
Soldier or Civilian
Gunner Ernest Stanley Rosson, 254727, 21st Reserve Battery Royal Field Artillery, was preparing to embark with a draft for France when he was taken ill with influenza. Pneumonia took over and he was taken to Shorncliffe Military Hospital in Kent, where he died eight days later.
The 22-year-old was given a funeral with full military honours at Luton Church Cemetery, Crawley Green Road, Luton. His coffin was carried on a gun carriage and covered with a Union Jack, with funeral music played by the band. The coffin was borne by men of the R.F.A., and a firing party and trumpeters performed the last rites at the graveside.
Ernest, the third son of Albert John and Harriet Ann Rosson, of 5 York Street, Luton, had joined up six months earlier and was in training at Woolwich. He had married Rhoda Alice Stones only four months earlier, in June 1918 at St Guthlac's Church, Passenham, Northamptonshire.
He was born in Luton in 1896, and in the 1911 census, when Ernest was a 15-year-old errand boy, we find him living with his large family at 5 York Street. His father is a straw hat blocker, and his mother is working at home as a straw hat machinist. Brothers Albert Percy, 21, is a house decorator and Sidney Herbert, 19 is a straw hat packer. The eldest sister Beatrice, 17, is a straw hat finisher. Mary, 13, Dora, 11, Ivy, 6 & 9 year old Horace are at school.
Pte Rosson had worked at the Brown & Green iron foundry in Luton before enlisting.
Ernest's older brother Sidney Herbert joined up in December 1915 into the 6th Battalion Middlesex Regiment as Pte 19344. He was declared physically unfit to serve in October 1917 as he spent much time in a military hospital due to his chronic bronchitis and asthma that started in the winter of 1914.
Ernest is commemorated on the Luton Roll of Honour/War Memorial and in the Book of Life compiled at Luton Parish Church.