First World War Distinguished Conduct Medal to 59th Australian Infantryman

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Australian Officer Gallantry, later casualty, Distinguished Conduct, GV,

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2059 SJT A. PARR 59/AUST:INF:

002The later 2nd Lieutenant Alfred John Parr, 59th Battalion Australian Imperial Force, awarded D.C.M. for actions in Villers Bretonneux, East of Amiens, 24th/25th April 1918;

Parr was wounded on 18th July 1915 on the Gallipoli Peninsula, re-joining the regiment on the 11th September; he was promoted Lance Corporal 4th December 1915 (11th December on other documents), Corporal 15th October 1916, Sergeant on 6th December 1916, Temporary Colour Sergeant Major (W.O. CL2) 1st May 1918 and 2nd Lieutenant 18th September 1918;

He was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal for actions of the 24th/25th April 1918. Gazetted 3rd September 1918 2059 Sjt. A. J. Parr, Infy.

Copy of 001

“For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. During our attack the services rendered by this N.C.O. were most valuable; he kept his platoon well in hand, and afforded every information to his company officer as to the needs of the situation. He led an attack on and captured an enemy machine-gun that was causing casualties, and near the final objective, with a bombing party, he captured another machine-gun and two officers and fifty men. He showed great courage throughout and set a fine example to his men. “

He died – 1st October 1918 aged 24 years of wounds received in the preceding days.Copy of 002

Alfred Parr, a Methodist, was born in Beeston, Nottinghamshire in 1894,. 1901 Census Parr was living aged 7, 19 Ratcliff Road, Loughborough, with his mother and stepfather, he attended Emanuel Boys School Loughborough; by 1911 Census they had moved to 72 Pinfold Gate, Loughborough where he is described as a ‘foundry worker’.

He emigrated to Australia shortly before the outbreak of war. He enlisted, in Australia, voluntarily, aged 21, as 2059 Private 59th Infantry Battalion, Australian Imperial Force on March 3rd 1915, giving his occupation as farmer, His mother, Mrs Elizabeth A. Newbon , who had remarried, was named as next of kin.

Alfred John Parr
Born – 1898, a twin.
Son of Mrs Elizabeth A. Newbon of 72 Pinfold Gate, Loughborough, England.
1901 – Living in Loughborough.
1911 Census – Foundry Worker in Beeston, Nottinghamshire.

Here follows a very brief summary of his service. There are many notes and service papers on the superb Australian War Archives.

3rd March 1915 Enlisted. Having enlisted he embarked from Melbourne on HMAT A20 Hororata on the 7th April 1915. He transferred to the 59th Battalion, Australian Infantry. He joined them on the 8th June 1915 and joined D Company.

Hororata-Departure-from-Port-Melbourne-1916.-Pictures-Collection-State-Library-of-Victoria.-300x217
18th July 1915 he disembarked the Gascon at Malta and was admitted to Military Hospital, Malta 18th July 1915.gascon
23rd August 1915 he was admitted to Australian Overseas Base Mustapha. He then transferred from Military Hospital, Tigne to St. Andrews.
20th August 1915 he embarked for Egypt on the Southland from Malta. 10 days later,HMAT Sean Choon
30th August 1915 he embarked on the Karoo for the Dardanelles.HMAT A10 Karoo
3rd August 1915 – admitted to All Saint’s Camp.
18th August 1915 – transferred to Riscasoli, Shrapnel Wound , Knee
22nd August 1915 Trans to St. Lawrence Convalescent Camp ex St David’s Malta – Shrapnel Wound Right Knee.
25th August 1915 disembarked at Alexandria off the Southland at Malta.
4th December 1915 – appointed Lance Corporal.
Spent time with 15th Brigade Grenade School, taken on strength

15th October 1916 – Promoted to Corporal vice – O’Shea wounded.
During 1916 and 1917 he spent time at Hurdcott, Aldershot and PTBF Corse, Tidworth.
6th December 1916 – Promoted to Sergeant.
15th April 1918 – Promoted Temporary Company Sergeant Major (W.O. Class II) vice. CSM Stephens killed in action.
3rd September 1918 – His DCM Citation appears in the Supplement, page 10373.
24th September 1918 – Promoted to Second Lieutenant.

18th September 1918:
The Unit War Diary confirms his promotion to commissioned rank.

29th September 1918:
An extract from the Unit War Diary reads “2 Lt Parr, who had pushed out to the left flank to small trench leading to foot of the slope, sent a message to say he was engaging the Germans, who were in the same trench with rifle grenades, also he was being fired on from unknown position with pineapples…..” It is probable that he was fatally wounded in this action.

Second-LieutenantAustralian Roll of Honour names him on Panel 168 on the Australian War Memorial. His place of association in Australia was Lelang, Victoria, Australia.

His grave, at , Prospect Hill Cemetery, Gouy. (CWGC). was to be marked – “Cherished Memories of one loved so dear.” His mother still noted at 72 Pinfold, Loughborough.001

His Distinguished Conduct Medal was leant to the Loughborough War Memorial Museum by a descendant in 1992 and was taken back by the same member of the family on March 21st 2014.

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Copy docs are available supporting this. It was up for auction by withdrawn by the same member of the family who sold it directly to the current owner.???????????????????????????????

2nd Lieutenant Parr died aged 24, 1st October 1918 of wounds received on the 29th September 1918, his name appears on the Loughborough Roll of Honour.

This medal is for sale – please contact us here or visit medals4heroes.co.uk

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