Private 1678 Charles Thomas Muskett

Charles Muskett was born early in 1896 in Poplar  to packing case maker , James Muskett and his wife Alice May.

After he left school Charles became a general labourer, joining the Territorial 6th Battalion  Essex Regiment in January 1914.

He was mobilised at the start of the Great War and after training embarked to Gallipoli where he landed as part of D Company on 10 August 1915.

On 18 October 1915 he was killed. His commanding officer provided details of his death to  Charles parents at their home, 205 Queens Road, Plaistow.

Pt C T Muskett died fighting very bravely.

I was going round the trench line with the Brigadier General when an interchange of bombing commenced at about midday.

I went to see that was one.

At No 3 post our line is 30 yards from the Turkish trenches. In front of them they have what seems to be an underground passage ending in a pit roofed in with very heavy baulks of timber. They throw hand grenades from there.

Our trench is very narrow, barely 2 1/2 foot to make it hard for the enemy to throw into. There are three screens made from wood and rabbit wire netting, placed at a slope overhead to keep out the enemy bombs.

Pt Muskett threw several bombs while I was there and so did Pt Brown.

Presently just after throwing, Pt Muskett crouched down with his back and left shoulder to the side of the trench, when an enemy bomb fell on the parapet and rolled exactly behind his back.

I quickly said " there is a bomb behind your back". I don't think that he understood, he smiled so sweetly and the next second the bomb went off, horribly fracturing his arm and blowing in his back. He can have known and suffered nothing.

Another man was wounded.

Pc 1352 Brown pushed the body gently to the bottom of the trench, and was the only fighting man left.

The dust began to settle down over everything and he went on throwing bombs till the Turks had had enough.

The General has since seen Pt Brown to compliment him on his staunch, British and cool, soldier like behaviour.

We buried poor Muskett after dusk in the valley near by, where lie half a dozen more, the 'Fighting Parson' as the men call Rev Pierrepont Edwards' officiating.

Muskett was a fine fellow and I feel his loss considerably.

Pte Charles Thomas Muskett does not have a marked grave. His loss of life is commemorated on the Helles Memorial.