(Service number 6/2811)

First Rank Private Last Rank Lance Corporal


Date 24 November 1893 Place of Birth Sheffield, North Canterbury

Enlistment Information

Date 19 April 1915 Age 21 yrs 3 mths
Address at Enlistment Sheffield
Occupation Farmer
Previous Military Experience 13th N. Cant & Westland Infantry Regt. (3.5 years)
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin G. WILLIS (father), Sheffield, North Canterbury. Later Mrs J. McLAUGHLIN, Sheffield, North Canterbury [oldest sister, Mary Elizabeth]
Religion Church of England
Medical Information Height 5 ft 11 in. Weight 157 lbs. Chest 32-37.5 in. Complexion fair. Eyes blue. Hair red. Sight, hearing, heart & lungs all normal. Limbs, chest well formed. Full movement of joints. Lower teeth good, top teeth artificial. Free from hernia, Variocele, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, inveterate or contagious skin disease. Good bodily & mental health. No slight defects. Fit for Field force.  

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation 6th Reinforcements
Unit, Squadron, or Ship Canterbury Infantry Battalion
Date 14 August 1915
Transport Willochra or Tofua
Embarked From Wellington Destination Suez, Egypt
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Canterbury Infantry Regiment, 1st Battalion

Military Awards

Campaigns Somme
Service Medals 1914-15 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

Post-war Occupations


Date 27 September 1916 Age 23 yrs
Place of Death Somme, France
Cause Killed in action
Memorial or Cemetery Caterpillar Valley (New Zealand) Memorial, Caterpillar Valley Cemetery, Longueval, Somme, France. Memorial inscription on parents' headstone in Waddington Cemetery, Malvern District, Canterbury, NZ
Memorial Reference Waddington Cemetery - Family plot
New Zealand Memorials On Memorial wall, Timaru

Biographical Notes

Son of George Reynolds & Mary (nee ARMSTRONG) WILLIS, of Sheffield. His WILLIS grandparents were amongst the Canterbury Pilgrims who arrived in the 'Cressy', one of the first four ships to reach Lyttelton in 1850. Enlisted at Trentham. Joined Battalion at Mudros on 30 September 1915. Disembarked at Alexandria on 30 December 1915. Appointed Lance-Corporal on 4 March 1916. Embarked for France on 6 April 1916. His was one of 175 deaths in New Zealand Casualty List No. 428. Oldest brother George Armstrong WILLIS, of Sumner, Christchurch, became legal next-of-kin following death of their father in January 1916, & was the recipient of the plaque & scroll. his personal effects were to be forwarded to his oldest sister Mrs J. McLAUGHLIN (Mary Elizabeth)


Cenotaph Database [21 March 2014]; NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives NZ Ref. AABK 18805 W5557 0123271 [22 March 2014]; CWGC [21 March 2014]; Evening Post, 4 February 1916, Timaru Herald, 14 October 1916, North Otago Times, Otago Daily Times & ashburton Guardian, 14 October 1916 (Papers Past) [21 March 2014]; NZ BDM Indexes (DIA) [21 March 2014]; Heather's Armstrong Tree ( [22 March 2014]; NZSG Cemetery Records (South Canterbury Branch NZSG microfiche collection) [23 March 2014]

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