Phillip Wellum Karste was born and brought up in Chelmsford where his father worked as a chelmist's assistant. He was educated at Trinity Road School and subsequently worked in the offices of the solictors Leonard Gray & Co. in Chelmsford. Early in the war he joined the army. He died from illness in hospital at Inverness in October 1940.
Phillip was born in the Chelmsford registration district in 1919, the youngest son of the chemist's assistant Albert Ernest Karsten and Olive Millicent Karsten (nee Wellum).
Philip’s father had been born in north London in 1886, the son of German-born professor of music Frederick William Maximilian Karsten.
Phillip’s mother came from Brightlingsea and had married Phillip’s father at All Saints’ Church in Springfield on 2nd April 1908. At that time Phillip’s father was living in Springfield and worked as a chemist’s assistant. His bride also lived in Springfield.
In 1911 the couple had been living at 16 Rainsford Road in Chelmsford along with Phillip’s eldest sister.
Phillip’s siblings included: Olive Marjorie Karsten (born in 1910), John Leonard Karsten (born in 1911), Doris Gwendoline Karsten (1913-2001), and Edgar Albert Karsten (1916-2005).
Phillip attended Trinity Road School in Springfield.
During the Second World War Phillip served as Driver T/328464 in the Royal Army Service Corps. On 12th October 1940 he died on active service in Cambusavie Hospital, Inverness, Scotland after a very short illness, aged 21. His parents lived at 152 Rainsford Road, Chelmsford (the same property as in 1911 but renumbered since).
Phillip Wellum KARSTEN, Driver, Royal Army Ordnance Corps
Died from illness at Inverness. Aged 21
Prior to joining the army, less than a year previously, Phillip had worked in the offices of Leonard Gray & Co. in Duke Street, Chelmsford.
His funeral service was held at St. Peter's Church, Chelmsford on 18th October 1940, followed by his interment at Chelmsford Borough Cemetery (grave: 5728). The service was led by the Rev. Ashley D. Turner.
Phillip left an estate valued at £175 16s. 10d. wtth probate granted to his mother. She died in 1949, her husband did so thirty years later.