Tommy was born in Nantmel in Radnorshire in 1897, a son of Richard Rowlands and his wife Mary Ann (nee Worthing). His father was a miller and had learnt his trade working with his father, also a miller, both at Argoed Mill, Nantmel, the family home.
Unfortunately, Tommy's father died in 1906 and the family moved to Brecon living at 5, Kensington Place in 1911 when Mary Ann is listed as a licensed victualler. Tommy's mother subsequently resided at 104, The Struet, Brecon.
Before the war Tommy was an apprentice with Messrs Nott and Co, Ironmongers. He joined the Brecknock Battalion in March 1915, initially going to Pembroke and then on to India with the Battalion. He was then transferred to the Machine Gun Corps and was sent to Egypt, before arriving in France in June 1918. Tommy was home on leave in Brecon in September 1918, with 5 colleagues from the Machine Gun Corps who had also served with the Brecknocks. They were all said to be looking fit and in good spirits.
When back in France Tom contracted influenza and was sent to Number 10 Casualty Clearing Station where he passed away, 6 days after the Armistice.
Private Thomas Edward Rowlands
Machine Gun Corps (Infantry), 30th Btn., service no. 114207
Died November 17th, 1918 in France, aged 21
Buried at Tourcoing (Pont-Neuville) Community Cemetery,
these troublesome points were cleared, and by 10 am all objectives had been taken. For what was gained, the one hundred and seventy casualties of the day, are on record as being ‘reasonable’. Captain Ross was among those killed.
His widow and young child lived at 19, The Watton before moving from Brecon, first to Cheltenham and later to Lewisham.