Profile

LANE, Alexander
(Service number 47154)

Aliases Sandy
First Rank Rifleman Last Rank Rifleman

Birth

Date 4 February 1886 Place of Birth Waimate

Enlistment Information

Date 25 January 1917 Age 30 yrs 9 mths
Address at Enlistment Waimate
Occupation Labourer
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin G. HICKS (friend), Hunter School, via Waimate
Religion Church of England
Medical Information Height 5 feet 7 inches. Weight 153 lbs. Chest measurement 34-37 inches. Complexion ruddy. Eyes grey. Hair brown. Eyes both 6/6. Hearing and colour vision both normal. Limbs and chest well formed. Full movement of joints. Heart and lungs normal. No illnesses. Free from hernia, varicocele, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, inveterate or contagious skin disease. Vaccinated (left arm). Fit, Class A.

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation New Zealand Rifle Brigade
Unit, Squadron, or Ship 25th Reinforcements, G Company
Date 26 April 1917
Transport Turakina
Embarked From Wellington Destination Plymouth, England
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Rifle Brigade

Military Awards

Campaigns Western European
Service Medals 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

Discharge

Date 23 November 1919 Reason Termination of period of engagement

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

26 December 1917 admitted to Casualty Clearing Station - sick. 2 August 1918 admitted to hospital with gun shot wounds received in action. 18 August 1918 again admitted to hospital. 15 November 1918 in UK suffered concussion in an accident.

Post-war Occupations

Labourer

Death

Date 17 October 1968 Age 83 yrs
Place of Death Waimate
Cause
Notices Timaru Herald, 18 October 1968
Memorial or Cemetery Waimate Lawn Cemetery
Memorial Reference Returned Service Area, Block 15, Plot 86
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Alexander LANE, known as Sandy, was the son of Frederick (Fred) and Matilda Louisa (nee DAWE) LANE, who had come out from England in 1873/74. His early life was probably quite simple, poor and tough. By 1886 Matilda was in difficulty over a mortgage and in 1891 she faced a court charge of stealing. In April 1886 Frederick was resisting attempts to evict him from the house he was occupying at Waituna, near Waimate. He had already been "turned out with his goods and chattels, and live stock, including some eight or ten children", but the family had again effected an entrance into the house. Hoped that "their Worships would make an order so that he couldn't go to his wife any more.". All this was going on just a few weeks after Alexander (8th surviving child) was born. Fred was gaoled, and Matilda would be too unless "she immediately vacates the house and land with all the little Lanes". A few days later Matilda was remanded to the cells for twenty-four hours, to think over the matter. In March 1896 Frederick was sentenced to 30 days' imprisonment for failing to comply with an order of the court for the maintenance of his children. And again in September 1897 he was sentenced to three months imprisonment for failing to comply with an order of the Court to contribute to the support of his three children (presumably the three youngest - Henry, Alexander and George). Yet again in February 1900, Fred was before the Court, for failing to contribute towards the maintenance of his children, as per the the order of 1896, the arrears of payment now being 44 pounds and 16 shillings. Alexander's mother died in 1893 and his father in 1909. So who really looked after little Alexander and his siblings? Maybe his older sister Clara. His next-of-kin, friend George HICKS, was the husband of his older sister Clara. In December 1895 Sandy was awarded a prize at the Waimate School. His father or his brother Frederick acquired the parsonage paddock in Waimate in October 1904, and this is where Alexander and his brothers Frederick and William lived for the remainder of their lives, Henry and George before their marriages. His oldest brother Fred was critically injured in an accident at Waimate on 10 July 1915 and died in the hospital less than a mnth later. Alexander was called up in 1916 and an older brother, William Edward LANE, in 1917. Brothers Henry LANE and George Arthur LANE were drawn from the Expeditionary Force Reserve in November 1917. Henry appealed and was deemed as fit only for home service. Sandy enlisted on 25 January 1917 at Timaru. He left Waimate for Trentham Camp in February 1917. He was reported wounded in May 1918, and again between 30 July and 1 August 1918. The May wounding resulted in his admission to hospital. He suffered concussion in an accident on 15 November 1918. His statement read "On November 15th 1918 I was playing football and collided with another player." On 27 September 1918 he was issued with these Decorations - 2 Blue Service Chevrons, a field service ribbon and 2 wound bars. He did acquire one entry on his conduct sheet - at Tidworth Pennings he was absent without leave from midnight 31 August 1917 till 2.30pm 1 August 1917, for which he had 3 days confined to barracks and forfeited 1 days pay. He embarked at Plymouth on 12 September 1919, reaching Auckland on 26 October. Sandy spent all his life in or near Waimate, living on Parsonage Road before and after the war, working as a labourer and dying there in 1968, possibly the last surviving member of his family.

Sources

Cenotaph Database [13 October 2014]; NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives NZ Ref. AABK 18805 W5541 0066067) [15 October 2014]; ; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [10 October 2014]; NZ Gazette 1916, 1917 [05 October 2014]; Waimate Cemetery burial records (Waimate District Council) [05 October 2014]; Waimate Lawn Cemetery headstone transcription (South Canterbury Branch Cemetery Records microfiche) [10 October 2014]; Timaru Herald, 3 February 1886, 24 December 1895, 5 & 10 April 1886, 16 October 1891, 27 March 1896, 18 September 1897, 5 February 1900, 15 October 1904, 12 & 13 July 1915, 10 August 1915, 25 November 1916, 12 February 1917, 7 November 1917, 13 December 1917, 6 June 1918, 17 August 1918, New Zealand Herald, 6 June 1918 (Papers Past) [11 & 14 October 2014; Family records (ancestry.com.au) [11 October 2014]; Wound Bars & What are Chevrons (Great War Forum) [reference; 15 October 2014]; Decoding Photos - Wound Badge & Service Chevrons (National Army Museum) [reference; 15 October 2014]

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TS

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