Trooper John O'Brien and unknown Australian 1915

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Trooper John O'Brien and unknown Australian 1915.

Caption

Public relations excercise showing the Australian Light Horse and New Zealand Mounted Rifles. The New Zealander (left)  is, 11/109 Staff Sergeant John William O'Brien of the Wellington Mounted Rifles. Trooper John O'Brien was born 1883 in Deal, Kent but lived in Wellington New Zealand when war broke out. He volunteered for for the Wellington Mounted Rifles after walking a friend, Jack Doolan, down to sign up. Jack at the last minute refused to do so unless John did as well. 

John was wounded in Gallipoli on the 9th of August 1915, and sent to England to recouperate. He arrived at Hornchurch hospital in London on September 4 that same year. He rose through the ranks, first being sent to the Records Office at base depot Hornchurch, then promoted to Corporal (December 15, 1915). On the 31st of January 1916 he became Acting Sergeant, then promoted to Staff Sergeant (June 1916) and Company Sergeant 2nd class at W.O. (4th of August 1916). His final promotion was May 30 1919 when he was made W.O. 1st-class and awarded the M.S.M. in "in recognition of valuable service rendered during the campaign" (London Gazette, Twelve Supplment).

 

Australian at right in unknown. Can you identify him?

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Trooper John O'Brien and unknown Australian 1915


Year:c.1915
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License
Trooper John O'Brien and unknown Australian 1915 by Tauranga City Libraries Staff - HC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License