(Service number 7/115)

First Rank Sergeant Last Rank Sergeant


Date 3 August 1881 Place of Birth Timaru

Enlistment Information

Date 12 August 1914 Age 32 yrs
Address at Enlistment Hobbs Street, Timaru
Occupation Contractor
Previous Military Experience S. C. Mounted Rifles - 12 years. Served in South African War - Private 4435; 7th Contingent.
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin W. RUTHERFORD, Senr., Hobbs Street, Timaru. (By 1920, in Masterton.)
Religion Presbyterian
Medical Information Height 5 ft 7 in. Weight 151 lbs. Chest 34-37 in. Complexion dark. Eyes brown. Hair black. Sight, heart, lungs normal. Hearing, colour vision good. Limbs, chest well formed. Full movement of joints. Teeth fair. Free from hernia, variocele, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, inveterate or contagious skin disease. Vaccinated. Good bodily & mental health. No physical defects to interfere with efficient performance. Bullet marks - right upper front & back; front left thigh; back left calf. Bullet scar front at thigh.

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation Main Body
Unit, Squadron, or Ship Canterbury Mounted Rifles
Date 16 October 1914
Transport Tahiti or Athenic
Embarked From Lyttelton, Canterbury Destination Suez, Egypt
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Canterbury Mounted Rifles

Military Awards

Campaigns Gallipoli
Service Medals 1914-1915 Star; British War Medal; Victory Medal.
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

5 October 1901, at Pondwana, wounded in the hip. August 1902 weakness & pain in knees.

Post-war Occupations


Date 13 July 1915 Age 34 yrs
Place of Death At sea, on Hospital Ship, HMHS Gascon ex Gallipoli
Cause Died of wounds (received in action at Dardanelles).
Memorial or Cemetery Lone Pine Memorial, Lone Pine Cemetery, Anzac, Turkey
Memorial Reference 71
New Zealand Memorials Memorial wall, Timaru. (Waimataitai School War Memorial as RUTHERFORD S. W.?)

Biographical Notes

William RUTHERFORD was the second son of William and Emma Louisa (nee KEARNS) RUTHERFORD. He was educated at Gleniti (then known as Wai-iti) School. He served in the South African War where he was wounded twice and was mentioned in despatches twice. Before this war he was a contractor for the Canterbury Farmers' Co-operative Association in Timaru. He enrolled and passed the examination on 12 August 1914, in a very lively and busy Drill Shed; he was not one of those rejected because they were over age or under age, insufficiently developed, had no experience, or were over weight (the regulation weight was 12 stone). Sergeant William Rutherford departed with the Mounted Men by the slow train from Timaru on 17 August 1914, amidst much excitement in the town, whilst their horses were trucked at the Smithfield siding, Waimataitai. The Mayor spoke of the pride in them and said that they were going forward with stout hearts and strong arms. "Be true lads to your King and Empire, to yourselves and your country, and put your trust in God," he said. Little diid they know what lay ahead. On 28 July 1915 the flag at C.F.C.A. was flown at half-mast. William was described as 'a very fine type of soldier' and a 'plucky comrade'.


Cenotaph Database [18 November 2013]; NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives NZ ref. AABK 18805 W5515 0004897) [20 November 2013]; CWGC [21 November 2013]; Timaru Herald, 24 December 1890, 13 August 1914, 18 August 1914, 29 July 1915 (x 2), 18 September 1916, Otago Witness, 16 October 1901, North Otago Times, 29 July 1915 (Papers Past) [18 November 2013, 07 December 2013; 11 August 2014; 30 August 2014; 01 September 2014]

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