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Remembered Today:

Lt. Rex George Bennett, RFC/RAF, KIA 28 May 1918


josquin

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Lt. Rex George Bennett was KIA 28 May 1918 as a member of 20 Squadron; CWGC lists his age as 29, and

his father as John Bennett, of Hanwell, Middlesex. The MIC I saw lists only RFC/RAF; no prior service.

Franks, in "Above the Trenches," states that he joined the RFC in September, 1915, as an Equipment

Officer and later trained as an airman. I need help in locating his birthdate and birthplace, and any

census information that may be available. He is not listed in the BMD Free Index or the U.K. census

material on Ancestry.com. In fact, Ancestry lists only a single Rex George Bennett who was born in

1885 and died in the 1970s, and is listed in the 1901 Census; regrettably, the wrong man. Any help

will be greatly appreciated--from SDGW or "Airmen Died in the Great War" to sources for UK births

abroad. I say the latter because John, his father, is listed in the 1861 English Census as an Ordinary

Seaman stationed with the Royal Navy at Port Royal, Jamaica; he was born at Hanwell, abt.1842-43.

If anyone is going to the National Archives, his service record is in AIR 76/35; a copy would be

invaluable.

Regards,

Trelawney

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Here you go:

Surname First name(s) District Vol Page

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Births June Quarter 1885

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Bennett Rex George Paddington 1a 34

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Transcribed from 1911 census:

BENNETT, Rex George Head Married Married Age: 25 Born: 1886 Occupation: Civil Servant 3rd Class Clerk Born In: Basford Notts

BENNETT, Maud Louise Wife Married for 1 year F Age: 26 Born: 1885 Born In: Kilburn Manchester

BENNETT, Dorothy Maud Daughter F Age: 5 Born: 1906 Born In: St Georges London

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Transcribed from 1911 census:

BENNETT, Rex George Head Married Married Age: 25 Born: 1886 Occupation: Civil Servant 3rd Class Clerk Born In: Basford Notts

BENNETT, Maud Louise Wife Married for 1 year F Age: 26 Born: 1885 Born In: Kilburn Manchester

BENNETT, Dorothy Maud Daughter F Age: 5 Born: 1906 Born In: St Georges London

Kim

Thank you for the very helpful information from the BMD and 1911 Census.

Trelawney

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I posted the 1911 and Free BMD information last night in a hurry and it's been bugging me about the two different places of birth!! It's quite obvious from the information that nothing matches up. Only one birth is showing up yet there appears to be 2 Rex George Bennetts!! Make of it what you will.

1901 has him at school as follows:

Name: Rex George Bennett

Age: 15

Birth: 1886

Born: Kilburn

Alternative 1911 Census:

BENNETT, Rex George Boarder Single Male Aged: 21 1890 Occupation: Engineering Draughtsman Cranes Born: Hanwell Middlesex - living in Loughborough

1891:

BENNETT, Rex Head Male 29 1862 Superintendent Public Gla? Tunbridge Kent

BENNETT, Charlotte Wife Female 29 1862 Pimlico London

BENNETT, Rex George Son Single M 5 1886 Scholar Maida Vale London

BENNETT, Charlotte D Daughter Female 4 1887 Scholar London

BENNETT, Herbert A Son M 2 1889 Scholar St Pancras London

BENNETT, ? ? Daughter Female 1890 Scholar St Pancras London

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I posted the 1911 and Free BMD information last night in a hurry and it's been bugging me about the two different places of birth!! It's quite obvious from the information that nothing matches up. Only one birth is showing up yet there appears to be 2 Rex George Bennetts!! Make of it what you will.

1901 has him at school as follows:

Name: Rex George Bennett

Age: 15

Birth: 1886

Born: Kilburn

Alternative 1911 Census:

BENNETT, Rex George Boarder Single Male Aged: 21 1890 Occupation: Engineering Draughtsman Cranes Born: Hanwell Middlesex - living in Loughborough

1891:

BENNETT, Rex Head Male 29 1862 Superintendent Public Gla? Tunbridge Kent

BENNETT, Charlotte Wife Female 29 1862 Pimlico London

BENNETT, Rex George Son Single M 5 1886 Scholar Maida Vale London

BENNETT, Charlotte D Daughter Female 4 1887 Scholar London

BENNETT, Herbert A Son M 2 1889 Scholar St Pancras London

BENNETT, ? ? Daughter Female 1890 Scholar St Pancras London

Yes, the problem stems from only one birthdate appearing in the BMD. Your suspicion is well-founded, however:

there ARE two Rex George Bennetts. The Kilburn man is not the RAF man who died in 1918:

the BMD Death Index lists a Rex George Bennett, who died at Greenwich in 1972, with an 11 April 1885 birthdate

that matches the BMD birth registry for 2 Q 1885 at Paddington. The alternative 1911 Census listing is the

RAF man: he was 29 when he was killed on 28 May 1918 and he was 21 at the time of the 1911 Census (in April)--so his birthdate may be May, or late April, 1889. Fortunately, the Census lists his birthplace as Hanwell, Middlesex, which is where

his father, John, was living after the Great War and also was his birthplace in 1842-43. The Hanwell connection

and the age makes me confident that the Loughborough draughtsman is the RAF airman. I have been unable to

find any BMD listings for a Hanwell birth c.1888-89, but the confirmation from the Census is more than I had hoped

to find and I thank you for your help with this. The absence of birth data in the RAF service record and the lack of prior Army service (and the attendant Army service record) would have led to a research deadend that was averted by the

1911 Census details. Your help is greatly appreciated and it solved the difficult question I raised.

Trelawney

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Hi Trelawney,

Glad a bit of it has helped!

Just as an absolute outside chance his place of birth is wrong, I've checked all the overseas births, births at sea and armed forces births and still nothing is showing up for him!!

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Hi Trelawney,

Glad a bit of it has helped!

Just as an absolute outside chance his place of birth is wrong, I've checked all the overseas births, births at sea and armed forces births and still nothing is showing up for him!!

Hi Kim,

Thanks for that! All of your efforts have really helped to solve a difficult biographical puzzle that was

not really helped by the minimal RAF service record.

Trelawney

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