Alfred Ryland Howard II was born on October 4, 1913, in Houston, Texas. He was the son of Alfred Philo Howard and Nancy Ella Flewellen Howard, and the husband of Edith Anson in August 1943. Alfred Ryland, II was a graduate of Stanford Military academy, Rice Institute and the University of Texas law school.
Lieutenant Howard enlisted in the field artillery of the 36th Division in 1940 while he was an assistant city attorney. He was sent to Camp Barkeley when the National Guard was mobilized and received his commission at Fort Sill, Okla. He went to liaison pilot school. at Pittsburg, Kan., and later served there as Commanding Officer of liaison pilots. Then, he was sent overseas and served as a forward air observer for the artillery in the 90th Infantry Division of the U.S. Army during the war. He arrived in Normandy in early June 1944 and was killed a month later. Captain Howard was piloting a single-engine Piper L-4, made of canvas over a light metal frame when he was shot down. Second Lieutenant William G. Windeler, a forward air observer, was also on board. The planes flew slowly enough to allow aircrews to spot the enemy and direct artillery fire on the enemy positions.
On 4 July 1944, when Ryland was performing a crucial artillery spotting role, his plane was hit by a shell from an American 155mm howitzer. The after-action review concluded that the density of US shells was so great that American pilots would be safer flying over German lines, and for the rest of the war, our pilots flew their observation missions closer to their targets and further from their own guns.
CPT Howard is now buried in the Glenwood Cemetery, Houston, Harris County, Texas, USA.
Source of information: www.findagrave.com, https://allyall.org