Edward R Home-Gall
Ernest Reginald Gall was born in 1897, the son of William Benjamin Home-Gall, who by then was a well established writer for boys contributing to Harmsworth’s The Boys’ Friend, Pluck, Boy’s Herald and Boys’ Realm, and Pearson’s Big Budget, usually under the pen-name Reginald Wray. Home-Gall was later remarried to Emma Edith Home-Gall. He died suddenly in 1936 following a heart attack.
Ernest joined the 8th (Service) (Isle of Wight Rifles) battalion of the Hampshire Regiment and served in Gallipoli from 10 Aug 1915. Like his elder brother Willie, Edward became an officer of the Royal Fusiliers and was commissioned on 22 Nov 1916. In 1917 he was awarded the Military Cross for his actions on 4 Jun at the battle of Messines whilst serving with the 32nd (East Ham) battalion: “For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty as Battalion Signalling Officer. He personally superintended the laying of wires under heavy shell fire, and was most successful in obtaining and maintaining communication throughout the action On 18 Mar 1918, as part of the Army’s reorganization on the Western Front, the 32nd Royal Fusiliers was disbanded and Edward transferred to the 10th Royal West Surrey Regiment. He was further seconded to the Signalling Service in for 5 months between Dec 1917 and Jan 1918.
Like his father and elder brother Edward was an author and was a prolific writer of boy’s stories. In 1927, he started writing for The Triumph and was a regular contributor for the next 13 years using the psydoneum Edwin Dale. In 1939, he wrote his first novel The Scapegrace Centre-Forward, again as Edwin Dale. This was followed in 1940 by Giraffe Jones, The Hairpin Half-Back.
After the war Edward continued his writing with more novels. In 1948, one of his more famous characters Ace Carew took off as a daring RAF fighter pilot in the days of World War II. Victor Gaunt Master Spy followed in two novels in 1949. Both these characters developed out of earlier writing for the Triumph. About 20 books followed during the 1950s. During the 1960s Edward, now writing as Judith Dale, in conjunction with Trudi Arlen, was responsible for the character Shirley, Flight Air Hostess. The Shirley Flight Air Hostess Series was published exclusively in the United Kingdom by World Distributors during the 1960s and was the British counterpart of the Vicki Barr Flight stewardess Series from the USA. In total, 16 Shirley adventures were written. Edward Home-Gall never married and died in 1974