Mr Reginald Hale, 30, was born in 1881 in the village of Rodney Stoke, the family having moved there from the nearby village of Priddy in 1878. He was the son of Silvester Hale (who ran the Rodney Stoke Inn) and Hester Hale (née Simmons). He was brother to Cordelia, Millicent, Percy, Tom, George, Florence (his twin), Caroline, William, John James, Matthew, Howard, Roland and Sampson.
In 1901 Reginald emigrated to Auburn, New York State where he found employment as janitor/gardener at the Home for the Friendless. This Home was located at 46 Grant Avenue and had been originally set up in the early 1870's to serve widows and children of the Civil War. He was described "as a willing worker and a young man of good habits. He was always obliging, and people at the home became greatly attached to him."
Hale's father died on 4 November 1911, and Reginald left Auburn to be with his mother for Christmas, sailing for England on the Olympic on 9 December 1911.
He had planned to return to Auburn in the March of 1912 but was unable to secure a passage in that month due to the coal strikes. On 1 April he wrote to the White Star agent, Mr Sidney Wills in Auburn.
''After keeping you waiting so long, I have made up my mind at last to drop a line telling you that I expect to return to the USA, on the 'Titanic' that sails from Southampton on 10th of April.''
He boarded the Titanic at Southampton as second class passenger (ticket number 250653, £13). To reach his destination Auburn, New York, he bought his ticket number 250653 for £13.
Hale died in the sinking. His body was subsequently recovered from the sea on 22 April by the cable-laying vessel MacKay Bennett (#75). A description was made and personal effects removed for forwarding on to his relatives.
NO. 75. - MALE. - ESTIMATED AGE, 28. HAIR, FAIR, LIGHT MOUSTACHE.
CLOTHING - Dark overcoat; dark suit; black socks; black boots; striped shirt.
EFFECTS - Gloves; keys; purse; $10 bill; 16s. 4d.
SECOND CLASS TICKET
NAME - REG. HALE
His mother had wanted the body to be buried in Rodneystoke, and Reginald's Lodge, General Gordon, No. 211, Sons of St. George, was prepared to pay the costs involved, but when the Auburn White Star agent, Mr Wills, travelled to Halifax to receive the body and to make arrangements for it to be returned to England he was told on arrival there that the body had been buried at sea on 24 April.
This was confirmed in a telegram sent to Hale's mother:
Regret to advise that it was necessary to bury the body of Reginald Hale at sea.
A memorial exists in the Rodney Vale Cemetery in Rodney Stoke, Somerset. The inscription reads:
of Rodney Stoke
November 4, 1911
who went down in the Titanic,
April 15 1912,
aged 30 years,
son of the above.
From the Mansion House Titanic Relief Fund his mother received 2s 0d weekly subsidies. Reginald left effects in England worth £100.