(Service number )
|First Rank||Lieutenant||Last Rank||Lieutenant|
|Date||7 October 1886||Place of Birth||Wellington, New Zealand|
|Date||20 January 1909||Age||23|
|Address at Enlistment|
|Previous Military Experience|
|Next of Kin||Son of John Sinclair and Annie Thomson nee Gould|
|Served with||New Zealand Armed Forces (?)||Served in|
|Body on Embarkation||21st Prince Albert Victor's Own Cavalry (FF) (Daly's Horse)|
|Unit, Squadron, or Ship||16th Cavalry|
|Embarked From||Bombay, India||Destination||Persian Gulf|
|Other Units Served With|
|Last Unit Served With||16th Cavalry|
Award Circumstances and Date
Prisoner of War Information
|Date of Capture|
|Where Captured and by Whom|
|Actions Prior to Capture|
|PoW Serial Number|
Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses
|Date||3 March 1915||Age||28|
|Place of Death||Basra, Persian Gulf|
|Cause||Killed in action|
|Memorial or Cemetery||Basra War Cemetery|
|Memorial Reference||III.C. 17|
|New Zealand Memorials||On Memorial wall, Timaru; Geraldine Church Memorial; Geraldine War Memorial; Woodbury War Memorial|
Kenneth Thompson was the son of Mr John Sinclair and Mrs Annie Thomson nee Gould of The Crossing, Geraldine, New Zealand. They were married in 1885 and Mr Thomson was a manager for the National Bank.
“[Kenneth] Was born in Wellington on 7 October 1886. He entered Wanganui Collegiate School in 1900, and remained here for five years, being a Prefect during his last year. From Wanganui Kenneth went for about a year to the Otago Medical School, and thence to St. Johns College, Cambridge. While at Cambridge he obtained a commission in the Kings Colonials and became so much interested in military matters that he decided to give up his medical career and go into the army. After taking his B.A. degree with honours in 1909, he obtained a commission in the Indian Army, leaving in February to join the 21st Cavalry, Frontier Force in the Persian Gulf. He was on leave in New Zealand for six months in 1913, and visited Wanganui. He was a good all round sportsman and enthusiastic polo player. Shortly after his leave he had some New Zealand ponies and a charger sent out to him to Poona. His death in action occurred in the neighbourhood of Basra, in the Persian Gulf, on March 3rd, 1915, he having been attached for service to the 16th Cavalry, and put in command of a machine-gun section. He can have only been a very short time at the front before he fell." (In Memoriam, 1914-1918 [Wanganui Collegiate School]).
Kenneth had two younger brothers also serving. Lieutenant Colin Sinclair Thomson, Royal Navy, served aboard the HMS Ambuscade and survived the war. His youngest brother, Captain George Alastair Thomson, served in the Argyle & Sutherland Highlanders and died of wounds 21 July 1916 aged 24.
Kenneth was possible the first New Zealander to be killed in action according to Barry O'Sullivan, a researcher for the 2012 War Graves Project.
Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph database (October 2014); Commonwealth War Graves Commission website (http://www.cwgc.org/) ; Births, Death, & Marriages Online (www.bdmhistoricalrecords.dia.govt.nz) ; PapersPast (www.http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/) ;Poverty Bay Herald 15 Mar 1915 page 6; Ancestry, ancestry.com.au
No documents available.
Researched and Written by
Liz Shea (SC branch NZSG); Ted Hansen (SC branch NZSG)
Currently Assigned to
Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License unless otherwise stated.
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