Topic: Harry Wensley Kirk (1889-1918)

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Omokoroa farmer Harry Wensley Kirk served with the Auckland Infantry Regiment during World War I. He died of measles and purulent bronchitis in England on 24 February 1918 and was buried in Tidworth Military Cemetery. Story by Debbie McCauley.

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Harry Wensley Kirk was born in Tauranga on 7 April 1889 (reg. 1889/4336) [registered date 18/4/1889]. His parents were Henry Benjamin and Ann Kirk (nee Colebrook) who married in Auckland in 1873 (reg. 1873/4847).

Harry worked as a farmer at Omokoroa. 

He enlisted in World War I on 3 March 1917 as a Private with the Auckland Infantry Regiment (Service Number: 59922).

Harry Wensley Kirk (1890-1918)

Harry disembarked in Liverpool, England, on 8 December 1917.

He was reported as being dangerously ill at the Military Hospital at Tidworth, Wiltshire, England, on 9 February 1918.

Harry died of measles and purulent bronchitis on 24 February 1918 at 3.40pm. He was 28 years old.

A death notice appeared in the Bay of Plenty times on 6 March 1918: 

Died of illness on February 24th, 1918 in Tidworth Military Hospital, England, Pte Harry Wensley Kirk, 30th Reinforcement, aged 28 years, youngest son of Henry and Annie Kirk, Papatoetoe, late of Tauranga (p. 2).

And in the Auckland Weekly News on 28 March 1918:

KIRK On 24 February 1918, died of illness at Tidworth Military Hospital, England, Private Harry Wensly Kirk, 30th Reinforcements, youngest son of Henry & Annie Kirk, Papatoetoe, late of Tauranga; aged 28.

Harry was buried in Tidworth Military Cemetery (Grave No. 284, Plot C).

Harry Wensley Kirk (1890-1918)



Archives New Zealand: Military Personnel File.

Auckland War Memorial Museum: Cenotaph Record.

Bay of Plenty Deaths (1872-1920): H-L.

Births, Deaths and Marriages Online (New Zealand)


A version of this article was archived in August 2016 at Perma CC

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Harry Wensley Kirk (1889-1918)

Note:Service Number: 59922
First Names:Harry Wensley
Last Name:Kirk
Date of Birth:7 April 1889
Place of Birth:Tauranga
Country of birth:New Zealand
Date of death:24 February 1918
Place of death:Tidworth Military Hospital, Wiltshire, England
Place of burial:Tidworth Military Cemetery
Fathers name:Henry Benjamin Kirk
Fathers date of birth:5 September 1841
Fathers place of birth:Wensleydale, North Yorkshire, England
Fathers date of death:4 September 1934
Fathers place of death:Tauranga, New Zealand
Mothers name:Ann Colebrook
Mothers date of birth:25 January 1853
Mothers place of birth:Benenden, Kent, England
Mothers date of death:30 September 1939
Mothers place of death:Auckland, New Zealand
Military Service:World War I (1914-1918)