Topic: Captain George Albert Tuck MC (1884-1981)

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Captain George Albert Tuck MC is remembered by Gun Sergeant A.A.Jackson. This article is reprinted with permission and first appeared in the No 20 6th Battalion (Hauraki) Regiment Association Newsletter (Hauraki News).

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6th Hauraki Insignia

Captain George Albert Tuck MC was born 13th February 1884 at Cambridge and was in Paeroa for a time, his father being in the office of the Waihi Goldmining Co.. He then spent a short time in Marnabie as his father was Secretary to the Mountain Rimu Co -( now State SawTnill).and he worked in the mill for a short time.

At the age of 18 he enlisted for service in South Africa, joining B Squadron 10th Contingent. Regimental No 8757 leaving NZ on April 14th 1902.

On his return he followed his occupation as a carpenter eventually making his home in Rotorua. Here he was responsible for all the carpentry work at the Okere Falls Power Station which supplied Rotorua for many years. He and his partner built the well known Maori Church at Ohinemutu. The contract price was 1400 pounds, and they made a reasonable profit.

At the outbreak of World War 1 he joined the 6th Hauraki's as a Private, with the Regimental No 12/474

The following is a detailed record of events.

  • 12.04.15          Left Alexandria for Dardanelles.
  • 20.04.15          Promoted to Corporal in the field.
  • 08.05.15          Wounded, bullet in the thigh.
  • 18.05.15          Disembarked at Malta
  • 29.05.15          Admitted St George Hospital. Malta
  • 13.06.15          Discharged from Hospital.
  • 12.07.15          Embarked "Seang Bee" Malta.
  • 17.07.15          Attached to strength at Mustapha.
  • 21.07.15          Embarked "Seang Bee" Alexandria.
  • 28.07.15          Rejoined Unit Dardanelles.
  • 29.09.15          Appointed acting Sergeant.
  • 20.10.15          Admitted NZ Field Ambulance Madras
  • 20.10.15          Transferred to No 2 Australian General Hospital.
  • 21.10.15          Appointed Temporary Sergeant in the field.
  • 28.10.15          Rejoined Unit Madras.
  • 29.12.15          Disembarked HT "Varsova" Alexandria.
  • 01.03.16          Transferred from No 1 Battalion. Ismalia.
  • 01.03.16          Relinquished appointment acting Sergeant Ismalia.
  • 01.03.16          Promoted Company Sgt. Major.
  • 08.04.16          Embarked "Aquatania" Alexandria.
  • 15.04.16          Promoted 2nd Class Warrant Officer France.
  • 26.08.16          Promoted 2nd Lt in the field.
  • 15.09.16          Wounded in action in the field.
  • 15.09.16          Admitted 63 Field Ambulance.
  • 16.09.16          Admitted No 8 General Hospital Rouen.
  • 17.09.16          Embarked England "Asturias"- gun shot wound in left thigh .France.
  • 19.09.16          Admitted No 1 NZ General Hospital. Brockenhurst.
  • 20.10.16          Attached NZ Command Depot. Codford.
  • 10.11.16          Marched in and posted 2nd Battalion A.I.R.
  • 24.11.16          Proceeded overseas.
  • 25.11.16          Attached NZ Infantry and General Base Depot Etaples.
  • 25.11.17          Rejoined Unit in the field.
  • 12.03.17          Detached for School of Instruction in the field.
  • 07.04.17          Returned from School of Instruction.
  • 09.04.17          Mentioned in General Sir Douglas Haig's Despatch.
  • 27.07.17          Proceeded on leave to Paris.
  • 08.08.17          Rejoined Battalion at leave.
  • 31.08.17          Proceeded on leave to UK.
  • 13.09.17          Rejoined Battalion.
  • 18.10.17          Appointed Quarter Master 2nd Battalion Auckland Regiment.
  • 19.10.17          Promoted to Lieutenant.
  • 01.01.18          Awarded M.C. for distinguished Service in the field.
  • 16.01.18          Leave for UK.
  • 02.02.18          Rejoined Battalion
  • 23.03.18          From Quarter Master 2nd Battalion appointed Adjutant, and appointed acting Captain.
  • 10.08.18          Wounded, remained on duty in the field.
  • 10.08.18          Admitted and discharged.
  • 25.08.18          Rejoined Battalion. In the field.
  • 08.03.19          NZTS "Willochra" South Hampton.
  • 15.04.19          NZTS "Willochra" to Wellington.

And there you have the bare bones of those years.

The mud,the cold,the lice,the retreats, the advances. The agony of wounded men, the bravery and sheer guts that made men accomplish the impossible. And always that one really wonderful thing that war brings out - comradeship. If only it could last in peace time.!

He was in every major battle. I remember him telling me how he would long to get away for a while. Inside a mule of leaving he felt he should be back. He thought the world of his men and on many occasions risked reprimand for his out spoken defence and comments on their behalf.

As one old soldier who served under him told me:

"He had a wonderful war record and I don't know of anyone who a better and I can say I have seen a few. Good on Parade and good in the line, which is very unusual. He was our Sgt.Major when 2nd 16th Waikato was formed at the Bitter Lakes by the Suez Canal in 1916. To tell the truth, we who were little more than kids were a bit scared of him, but he broke us in and got us ready for the trenches in France. He survived right through to the end. How he did it I don't know".

That was a tribute from another good soldier who new him. I myself am now 76 - too old to do what I would have liked to do - put the meat around the bones that I have presented here. The human stories of events, that despite his age his still recalls with clarity. He is blessed with a sense of humour, which I am certain must have helped him through the misery, the monotony, and the danger of those terrible years from Gallipoli to surrender in Germany.

Article sent in by Reg. No. 20849 Gun Sergeant A.A.Jackson. (Capt. Stuck's nephew)

 

Other Resources

  1. Te Ara entry on George's life.
  2. Search Digital New Zealand for references to Geroge Albert Tuck



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Captain George Albert Tuck MC (1884-1981)


Year:c.1880, c.1900, c.1910, and 1920
First Names:George Albert
Last Name:Tuck
Date of Birth:1884
Place of Birth:Cambridge