A Place of Honor and Remembrance In the Home of the Brave
Belleville, New Jersey
Edward Joseph Crowell
Belleville Soldier Died at Brest, War Department Tells Parents
Mr. & Mrs. Edward Crowell of 19 Factory Street, Belleville, last night received a telegram from the War Department that their son, Private Edward Crowell Jr., had died of wounds in Brest, August 4, 1919. The soldier had been wounded in action, but was believed to have fully recovered.
He was a member of the Fifty-ninth Infantry and had been in France two years.
Private Crowell was wounded on Nov. 4, but took part in the victory parades in both London and Paris. He was twenty-six years old, was born in Belleville and was a member of the Belleville Democratic Club and St. Peter's Catholic Club.
Besides his parents he is survived by two brothers, Martin, who is in the Navy, and James of Belleville; and two sisters, Mrs. James Lockwood of Haskell and Mrs. George Machete of Forest Hill.
-- Undated newspaper clipping.
Belleville Pays Tribute To War Heroes
Edward Crowell Jr. and Michael Flynn Jr. return to Belleville
Belleville paid final tribute to two of its war heroes yesterday at the joint military funerals of Private Edward Joseph Crowell, Jr. son of Mr. and Mrs. Edward J. Crowell, 19 Factory Street, and Private Michael A. Flynn, Jr., son of Police Chief Flynn.
Throngs lined Washington Avenue as the cortege proceeded from St. Peter's Catholic Church to St. Peter's Cemetery. The bodies were borne on gun caissons. The photo shows the body of Private Flynn in the foreground, as the procession was passing the Town Hall.
Chums in boyhood, comrades in enlisting in the army, these two youths who made the supreme sacrifice in accidents far from the battle fronts after participating in some of the fiercest engagements of the war, went together to their graves, which lie side by side.
To honor these heroes, both of whom had been decorated for valorous conduct in fighting, the American Legion Post and the George Younginger and Abraham Lincoln Posts, Veterans of Foreign Wars, united yesterday to form the escort for the procession.
- Newark Star-Eagle
Edward Joseph Crowell, Jr. was born on March 9, 1894, in Belleville, N.J. He was baptized on March 25, 1894 in St. Peter's Church in Belleville.
As a boy growing up, Edward had a friend, Michael Flynn, Jr., and as best friends go, these two boys were inseparable.
Then in 1916, every parent's nightmare was realized in the wake of World War I. Yet to young men like Edward and Michael, it was a time of honor and duty.
Edward enlisted in the Army on June 17, 1917 and was sent to Fort Slocum, N.Y. Eddie wanted his childhood friend to enlist with him, but Mikey was rejected because of his teeth. Flynn saved his money to have his teeth fixed and later reapplied and was accepted into the Army.
Later Edward was assigned to a training camp at Syracuse, N.Y. From here he was sent overseas.
While in Europe, the two friends were reunited and had a picture taken together with a John Grant of Boston who was Flynn's bunk mate. Pvt. Edward J. Crowell was a member of the 59th Infantry.
Crowell's grandnephew, Ed Morrows recalls his grandmother and Edward's sister, Catherine Machette, saying that her brother had the nickname of "Whitey". When I asked why was this his nickname, she said that the war had turned his hair white.
According to accounts, both tragically died after the war was over but before returning home. Eddie was in a bar the night before he was to sail home to America.
Another soldier was drunk and said some nasty remarks about Eddie's mother. A fight ensued and Eddie was stabbed in the temple. He died the next day, on August 4, 1919, as the ship he was to be on sailed from the harbor.
Michael Flynn was said to have been riding on a train in a boxcar with other soldiers. They were horsing around when Michael fell off and under the train and was killed instantly.
Throughout their lives they were inseparable and now both were honored in a joint funeral in Belleville. They were buried side by side in St. Peter's Cemetery.
-- Written by Ed Morrows, Used with permission.
The following is from St. Peter's Church, Belleville, New Jersey - 150 Years
"On October 5, 1923, the Reverend Edwin Field was appointed to the post of pastor at St. Peter's Church in Belleville, New Jersey.
Father Field was a deeply patriotic man, and envisioned a monument to be constructed in memory of the men of the military and naval forces who had lost their lives in the "several wars."
With his objective in mind, he set off a section of the rectory grounds at the corner of William and Dow Streets as the place for this monument, and it was dedicated on May 30, 1929.
Five thousand people attended the ceremonies including John Barrett, the last of the Civil War veterans in Belleville; veterans of the Spanish American War and World War I; and members of the American Legion and its Ladies Auxiliary, as well as several other organizations.
The ceremony was described as beautiful and moving. The address of presentation to the church was made by John A. Matthews, and the speech of acceptance made by a former congressman, James Hammill.
Five thousand voices were raised to sing the "Star Spangled Banner," while Lt. Edward J. Lister of the Foreign Legion raised the flag to the top of the monument. Bishop Walsh led the congregation in the salute to the flag, and then the crowd sang "Holy God We Praise Thy Name."
Taps were sounded in memory of the war dead, and a salute fired under the direction of Lt. Commander Morrow of the U.S. Navy.
Names of those inscribed in the monument who lay down their lives for their country included Harry Benjamin Blekike, Carmen Carruccio, Edward Crowell, Michael Augustus Flynn, Henry Charles Hoag, Edward Joseph Kane, Charles McGinty, Thomas Joseph Mooney, Michael John Murray, Charles Aloysius Schaffer, William Thomas Smith, Edward W. Stochman, and George John Kalvio. This monument has since been relocated to a place of honor at the main entrance to the cemetery."
Newspaper clippings and photos provided by Ed Morrows
Ed Morrows, grandnephew of Edward Crowell
St. Peter's Church, Belleville, New Jersey - 150 Years
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