Mr David John 'Dai' Bowen

Dai BowenDai Bowen
Courtesy: David Huxtable, UK

Mr David "Dai" John Bowen, 20,1 was a collier living at Baglan Street, Treherbert, Rhondda, Wales, with his widowed mother.2 He was a professional boxer and was the Welsh lightweight champion. He was travelling to the USA under contract for a series of boxing contests. He was accompanied by fellow Welshman and boxer Leslie Williams 3. His ring weight was described as a few pounds heavier than Leslie Williams' 122 pounds. He was regarded as a promising fighter.

Bowen was single. He and Williams booked passage through the Cardiff office of Dean and Dawson, tourist and steamship agents, 67 St. Mary's Street, Cardiff (ticket number 54636, £16 pounds 2 shillings).

Dai Bowen
Courtesy of Martin Bell, UK

They boarded the Titanic at Southampton as third class passengers.

Dai Bowen wrote a letter to his mother dated 11 April 1912 his words include 'This is a lovely boat, she is very near so big as Treherbert ...'

Bowen died in the sinking. His body, if recovered, was never identified.

Credits
Martin Bell
Chrissie Brown
Mrs N. Jones (Great Niece of Dai Bowen)
Dave Gittins
David Huxtable
Sian Prescott
Karan Price (Granddaughter of George Cundick)

Notes
  1. He was listed on the passenger list as 26 (probably and intentional deception by his boxing coach/publicist, to release him from parental supervision, both for his training in France and in order to travel in the US). His age is confirmed by a memorial in Treorchy.
  2. His sisters were Martha, Elizabeth, Mary, Leah and Margaret.
  3. They were trained in South Wales by George Cundick. In his younger days George had been sent to India with the British Army, where he won many trophies for his boxing talents.
References and Sources
South Wales Daily News, 17 April 1912, p.12
South Wales Daily News, 10 May 1912, p.5
South Wales Echo, 15th April 1912, p.3

Articles and Stories

2 BOXERS DIE ON TITANIC

Chicago Examiner  (1912) 

2 BOXERS DIE ON TITANIC

 
PUGILIST DIES ON TITANIC [David Bowen]

Chicago Inter Ocean  (1912) 

PUGILIST DIES ON TITANIC [DAVID BOWEN]

 
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