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Cenotaph

Record detail

Full Name
Athol Richard James Garthwaite
Rank Last Held
Trooper
Forename(s)
Athol Richard James
Surname
Garthwaite
Also Known As
Happy
War
World War II, 1939-1945
Serial No.
19108
Gender
Male
Date of Birth
19 June 1915
Place of Birth
Lumsden, Southland, New Zealand
Religion
Brethren
First Known Rank
Private
Occupation before Enlistment
Gardener
Next of Kin
Mr F. Garthwaite (father), 121 Venus Street, Invercargill, New Zealand
Marital Status
Single
Enlistment Address
121 Venus Street, Invercargill, New Zealand
Enlistment Date
24 March 1941
Age on Enlistment
25
Military District
Invercargill
Embarkation Unit
6 Reinforcements
Embarkation Date
27 June 1941
Destination
Egypt
Campaigns
  • Africa
  • Italy
Military Awards
  • Italy Star
  • Africa Star
  • 1939-1945 Star
  • War Medal 1939-1945
  • New Zealand War Service Medal
Wounds and Diseases
Wounded and admitted to the 53 and 12 General Hospitals.
Last Unit Served
20 Armoured Regiment
Place of Death
Florence, Italy
Date of Death
28 July 1944
Age at Death
29
Year of Death
1944
Cause of Death
Killed in action
Cemetery Name
Florence War Cemetery, Italy
Grave Reference
VII. E. 17.
Obituary
6 August 1944
Biographical Notes
  • Athol Garthwaite was the son of Frederick and Emma May Garthwaite, of Invercargill, Southland, New Zealand.
  • Athol Garthwaite was one of five brothers who served in WW II and was the only one killed.
Description of Image
  • Portrait, Weekly News
  • Headstone, Florence War Cemetery (photograph Gabrielle Fortune 2008).
Additional Information
  • During July 1944 the New Zealand Artillery was part of the advance to Florence. After the fall of Rome troops rested by the Liri river, training and recreation taking up the days until 7 July when orders were received that the Division should concentrate near Lake Trasimene.
  • After the taking of Rome by the Allies in June 1944 the Germans fell back to the Gothic Line. They needed time to consolidate this line. For their part the Allies aimed to reach the Northern Apennines before this consolidation could take place. The result was that as the Fifth Army advanced along the coast and the Eighth Army advanced further inland they found stiff resistance as the Germans sought to slow down Allied progress. From 5 July the Allies encountered resolute resistance in defence of positions just south of a line Ancona-Arezzo-Leghorn and in particular on both sides of the Chiana valley. The Allied attack along this line began on 14/15 July. Within a week it had taken all the strong points of the German defences and had gained the ports of Ancona and Leghorn. The Americans reached the Arno on 4 August and on the 13 August the 8th Indian Division crossed the river and occupied Florence.
Sources Used
Commonwealth War Graves Commission. URL: http://www.cwgc.org
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