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laughton

New Zealand: Recovering the Fallen

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jacksdad

6.A.31. is an unusual one

The burial register report states that he is 2/NZIB but then states that he was wearing a NZR badge.

I wonder if the 2/NZIB is a mistake, it would be easy to do as there is really no specific badge to define a man as 2/NZIB.

It would be a lot harder to mistake the NZR badge if it was present.

So I tend to think that this a 3/NZRB rifleman.

So that would lean towards Farland, Loader or Wadsworth in your #1 post list

 

Cheers Roger

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laughton

Roger:

 

I took the RUNNER in 6.A.31 to be similar to the SIGNALLER in 6.A.34. In the case of the RUNNER he is N.Z.R., so as you have said, he has to be 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade - which means Farland, Goulton, Grace, Loader or Wadsworth. The 3rd NZR runner was assigned to the 2nd Brigade H.Q.

 

LOADER was eliminated because he had a known burial site. GRACE was eliminated because he is too tall and his CSM was sure that he had been taken by the Germans, dead or alive. This morning I checked all the ICRC documents to see if there was any indication that LOADER had been a POW or if a report had been filed that he may be a POW. Although there was a NZ Private William Loader in the records (26/409), he was not the correct man, as he was taken at Ypres on 12 October 1917. If the Germans did take him, he would not be in Achiet-Le-Petite, as that was now in British hands.

 

That left three (3) candidates, FARLAND, GOULTON and WADSWORTH. If it was not for the reports in the Service Records, I would have put my bet on GOULTON as he was the "Bushman", the correct height and had no teeth. Only problem was that there was no indication he had ever been assigned to the 2nd Brigade H.Q.

 

There was only one of the 5 men that had been assigned to 2nd Brigade H.Q. and that was WADSWORTH so he has to be the RUNNER? His service record is very clear about that assignment. Granted, he was 2 inches taller than that estimated for the remains but the fact that he was the only one assigned to the Brigade H.Q. solves that case.

 

It is my opinion that there is sufficient evidence to go to the CWGC with the case that McHarg was the Signaller and Wadsworth was the Runner. As always, I openly accept any challenges and most certainly any additional information. We need to be sure we have the right men, the CWGC does not accept assumptions.

 

I did check the files this morning for any sign of LOADER. There was one location close but certainly nothing that could lead to a conclusion as to his recovery. I would still need to check all the other cemeteries for the same grid locations given for Loader (57c.G.24.a.2.8).

 

I found it very interesting to learn a bit about the New Zealand forces and the sources of information. I recall that there were a number of NZ boys with our Canadians around Passchendaele, particularly at the Aid Station around Waterloo (the site of the PILL BOX). I plan to go back and look at some of those now that I know there is information available. Your input has been outstanding!!

 

Cheers,

Richard

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laughton

Roger:

 

I see now that the initial list I had for the Signaller was based on the original structure of the Brigades, so when you worked with my list you had a list with my error. You later explained the structure as it would have been in August 1918.

 

I am now writing the draft report and that is where I saw this error so now I have it written as follows:

 

Quote

In order to first qualify for the review, you had to be have died in this time period and listed on the Grevillers (New Zealand) Memorial (Attachment #7). That provided a short list of 13 candidates.

To further qualify for the 2nd Infantry Brigade we know that you must be with 1st or 2nd Otago Battalion or the 1st or 2nd Canterbury Battalion. The four (4) members of the Rifle Battalions are excluded as they are in the 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade. Note that Wadsworth of the 4th Battalion, 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade is the only casualty listed for 29 August 1918. Three (3) members of the Wellington Regiment are excluded as they are in the 1st Infantry Brigade. That leaves six (6) candidates from the Otago and Canterbury Regiments (Bell, Bay, Jervis, McHarg, Pennie and Rasmussen).

In order to determine which member of the 2nd Infantry Brigade was the UNKNOWN SIGNALLER it was necessary to check the Military Service Files of each of the candidates, all of which are available on-line (Archway Advanced Search – enter last name as “Keyword”). In the case of Lance Corporal McHarg, the search revealed that he was the only qualified candidate that was a SIGNALLER (Attachment #7).  Now I need to redo the list for all of them!

 

I will send you the draft as soon as I get that part finished but first I now have to recheck the service files for the new ones on the list. It could turn out to drastically change the results, as some of the new men on the list are casualties of the 25th.

 

Back soon with the results! The new list follows.

 

Richard

 

surname initials death rank regiment unit # in/out  
BELL J M 25-08-18 Private Canterbury Regiment 2nd Bn. '51257' x no mention of Signaller or Brigade HQ connection
BEY W F 25-08-18 Private Otago Regiment 1st Bn. '38799' x buried elsewhere 57c.G.24.d.3.9 railway
EVANS W J 26-08-18 Private Wellington Regiment 2nd Bn. '36176' x wrong brigade
GOULTON C 26-08-18 Rifleman New Zealand Rifle Brigade 3rd Bn. '23371' x wrong brigade
GRACE E M 26-08-18 Rifleman New Zealand Rifle Brigade 2nd Bn. '65381' x wrong brigade
JERVIS L G 25-08-18 Private Otago Regiment 1st Bn. '46836' x buried elsewhere 57c.G.24.d.3.9 railway
LOADER W J 28-08-18 Rifleman New Zealand Rifle Brigade 1st Bn. '69412' x wrong brigade
McHARG L H 25-08-18 L/Corporal Canterbury Regiment 2nd Bn. '44066' in Signaller
PENNIE W 25-08-18 Private Canterbury Regiment 1st Bn. '28913' x buried elsewhere 57c.H.26.central
RASMUSSEN J J 25-08-18 Private Otago Regiment 1st Bn. '30291' x no mention of Signaller or Brigade HQ connection
SAVAGE A 25-08-18 Corporal Wellington Regiment 2nd Bn. '24/1807' x wrong brigade
WADSWORTH G A 29-08-18 Rifleman New Zealand Rifle Brigade 4th Bn. '26/647' x wrong brigade
WHITE A E 26-08-18 Private Wellington Regiment 2nd Bn. '64184' x wrong brigade
Edited by laughton
updated search results

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laughton

I have to re-evaluate this case as in the process I believe that I crossed some of the files between Bell-McHarg and Wadsworth.

 

  1. The dental records belong to Bell and not McHarg.
     
  2. Wadsworth was attached to Brigade Headquarters but now I do not see that for McHarg.

 

So if this is true, I have ended up with no qualified candidates?

Edited by laughton
crossed files - my error

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