|The Rushden Echo Friday 12 October 1917, transcribed by Nicky Bates
Rushden Musician Killed - Bandsman Arthur Odell - Formerly of the Temperance Band - Tribute by Mr Charles Ashby
We deeply regret to report that Mr and Mrs John Odell, of 54 Queen-street, Rushden, have received official news that their only son, Bandsman Arthur ("Jack") Odell, of the - London Regt, was killed in action on September 13th. The first intimation Mr and Mrs Odell received of their son's death was a letter from Bandsman E Webster, of Rushden, who wrote:-
"Dear Mr and Mrs Odell - Please accept my deepest sympathy and many God help you to bear your burden. Your dear son was laid to rest at Y Wood tunnels, near Ypres. I put this little text above his grave 'Greater love hath no man that this, that a man lay down his life for those he hold dear.' I must close, tendering the deepest sympathy of his section chums."
The late Bandsman Odell, who was 28 years of age, leaves a widow and three little children under five years of age. He had been a member of the Rushden Temperance Band from boyhood, commencing with the cornet. Late, he played the E flat bass. Mr Chas. Ashby, for many years secretary of the band, and who now resides at Blackpool, writes, "I have no hesitation in saying that he was one of the best of bandsmen, always ready to do his bit, and when I came away from Rushden he had the ability of making one of the finest bass players the Temps have ever had."
Bandsman Odell joined up about two years ago with the late Bandsman John Webster, of Rushden, who was killed about seven months ago, dying in Bandsman Odell's arms. These soldiers were staunch pals, always together in the Temps, and on their military duties after joining the Forces. The deceased soldier had been in France about 14 months, when he met his death from a shell. It is a mercy that he was killed instantaneously, so that he suffered no pain.
As a lad he passed through the Sunday school of the Independent Wesleyan Church, Rushden, and was a member of the Rushden (Myrtle) Lodge of Free Gardeners from boyhood. Prior to enlistment, he was employed by Messrs. Morris & Sons, stonemasons Rushden. Much sympathy is felt throughout the town and amongst the remaining members of the Temps, with the widow and bereaved parents.