Other names: Charlie Stephen
Locations in this story: ShaftesburySunderland War HospitalHoly Trinity Churchyard, ShaftesburyLayton Lane, ShaftesburyBay, GillinghamSt. James' Church, ShaftesburySt. Peter's Church, ShaftesburyFlanders
Story: Charles Stephen King was born on 18th October 1888 in Shaftesbury. He was the son of Stephen King, a painter, and Virtue King (née Hanks). His mother, Virtue, died in 1893 and was buried on 10th August, 1893. His father remarried on 28th August, 1897 to Emily Ann Chapple. On 17th October, 1909 Charlie married Bessie Imber and they had three children: two girls and a boy. Their first child, Dorothy Edith was born in 1910. At the time of the 1911 Census Charlie was working for a railway company as a house painter and the family were living in Bay, Gillingham, Dorset. Later in the year their son Charlie John was born. He enlisted on 11th December, 1915 but was not mobilized until 17th August 1916 as a Gunner in the 237th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery (Service No. 116267) and was awarded the Victory and British War medals. He received gun shot wounds to his legs in Flanders on 17th August 1917. On 6th September he was transferred to the Sunderland War Hospital where he died of septicaemia and shell shock on 15th September 1917. He was buried south of the church in Holy Trinity Churchyard in Shaftesbury. The name inscribed on the headstone was "C.R. KING" which differs from the name that appears on official documents. In 2018 this error was rectified with the erection of a new headstone, after a local resident contacted the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Charlie is also remembered on the Park Walk and St. James’ War Memorials and on the Roll of Honour in St. James’ Church. His name can be seen on the Holy Trinity memorial, now in St. Peter's Church, Shaftesbury. At the time of Charles' death his wife Bessie was living at 5 Layton Lane, St. James, Shaftesbury where a third child, Bessie Elizabeth, was born on 9th November 1917. Charles' widow was in receipt of a pension for herself and the three children of 26s. 3d. per week. His brother, Edmund Arnold King, served and survived but his half-brother, Arthur Stanley King, was killed in action in Flanders.