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Record detail

Full Name
Gordon Gerald Harper
Rank Last Held
Second Lieutenant
Forename(s)
Gordon Gerald
Surname
Harper
Also Known As
Gerald Gordon Harper
War
World War I, 1914-1918
Serial No.
7/516
Gender
Male
Date of Birth
15 February 1885
Place of Birth
Christchurch, New Zealand
Religion
Roman Catholic
First Known Rank
Trooper
Occupation before Enlistment
Sheep farmer
Next of Kin
George Harper, Hereford Street, Christchurch, New Zealand
Marital Status
Single
Enlistment Address
10 Gloucester Street, Christchurch, New Zealand
Military District
Canterbury
Body on Embarkation
Main Body
Embarkation Unit
Canterbury Mounted Rifles
Embarkation Date
16 October 1914
Place of Embarkation
Lyttelton, Canterbury, New Zealand
Transport
Vessel
Tahiti or Athenic
Destination
Suez, Egypt
Nominal Roll Number
Vol1
Page on Nominal Roll
304
Military Awards
  • Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM)
  • Mentioned in Despatches (MiD)
Award Circumstances
  • Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM): For conspicuous gallantry between the 21st and the 30th August, 1915, at Kaiajik Aghala (Dardanelles), when in charge of machine guns. He invariably displayed great bravery and devotion to duty. L.G. 11 March 1916, p2746.
  • Mentioned in Despatches (MID): in connection with operations described in General I. Hamilton's despatch dated 11 December 1915. L.G. 28 January 1916, p1210.
Last Unit Served
Canterbury Mounted Rifles
Place of Death
Egypt
Date of Death
12 August 1916
Age at Death
31
Year of Death
1916
Cause of Death
Died of wounds
Cemetery Name
Cairo War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt
Grave Reference
M. 133.
Biographical Notes
  • He was the sixth son of Mr George Harper of Christchurch, Barrister-at-law.
  • On the outbreak of war he enlisted in the New Zealand Mounted Rifles' Canterbury Yeomanry Cavalry and left New Zealand with the Main Body New Zealand Expeditionary Force in October, 1914.
  • He saw much service in Gallipoli with the Machine-gun section of the Canterbury Yeomanry Cavalry, was wounded during the operations following Suvla Bay landing in August, 1915, and was sent to hospital in England.
  • For his services during these operations he was awarded the D.C.M. and at about the same time, received his commission as machine-gun officer. After recovering from his wound he returned to Egypt in December 1915 and saw service in the operations on the Suez Canal up to the time of his death.
  • He died at Cairo on 12 August 1916 from wounds received at the fighting at Romani, Egypt.
Description of Image
Portrait from Powles, C.G. (1922).
Additional Information
Listed incorrectly as George Gerald in the Nominal Rolls
Archives NZ source
Further References
  • Alexander Turnbull Library MS Papers 1444; Letters 1914-15; Diary May-August 1915.
  • The Museum Library has a copy of 'Letters from Gunner 7/516 and Gunner 7/517' by Barbara Harper (Ref. D640) This is an edited edition of the letters written by these two soldiers during World War 1.
Sources Used
  • Boyack, N. (1989). Behind the lines : the lives of New Zealand soldiers in the First World War. Wellington, N.Z.: Allen & Unwin/Port Nicholson Press.
  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission. URL: http://www.cwgc.org
  • Nominal Rolls of New Zealand Expeditionary Force Volume I. Wellington: Govt. Printer, 1914-1919
  • Powles, C.G. (1922). The New Zealanders in Sinai and Palestine. Auckland, N.Z.: Whitcombe and Tombs. Digitised copy on NZETC site. URL: http://www.nzetc.org/tm/scholarly/tei-WH1-Sina.html
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