(Service number 55491)
|First Rank||Private||Last Rank||Private|
|Date||12 October 1890||Place of Birth||Waimate, New Zealand|
|Date||7 May 1917||Age||26|
|Address at Enlistment||Carter Street, Waimate, New Zealand|
|Previous Military Experience|
|Next of Kin||Mrs Emily Sylvie Hawkins (mother), Cardiff Street, Waimate, New Zealand|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Medical Information||5 foot 7 inches tall, weight 131 pounds (59 kgs), chest 32 - 35 inches, pale complexion, hazel eyes, brown hair, good teeth|
|Served with||NZ Armed Forces||Served in||Army|
|Body on Embarkation||New Zealand Expeditionary Force|
|Unit, Squadron, or Ship||28th Reinforcements, Canterbury Infantry Regiment, C Company|
|Date||26 July 1917|
|Embarked From||Wellington, New Zealand||Destination||Plymouth, Devon, England|
|Other Units Served With|
|Last Unit Served With||Canterbury Infantry Regiment|
|Service Medals||British War Medal, Victory Medal|
Award Circumstances and Date
Prisoner of War Information
|Date of Capture|
|Where Captured and by Whom|
|Actions Prior to Capture|
|PoW Serial Number|
|Date||31 December 1919||Reason||No longer physically fit for war service on account of illness contracted on active service|
Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses
11 November - 7 December 1917 - admitted to hospital Tidworth. 22 December 17 - 12 Jan 1918 - Segregation Unit France (infectious diseases). 8 February 18 - adm 3 NZ Field Ambulance - transferred 13 Feb to 63 Casualty Clearing Station. 20 February 1918 - transferred to 14 General Hosp Boulogne. 22 February 1918 - embarked England and adm 2 NZ General Hospital Walton (bronchitis). 1 March 1918 - transferred to 1 NZ General Hospital Brockenhurst. 12 June 1918 - transferred to the NZ Convalescent Hospital. 30 September 1918 - medically boarded as unfit.
|Date||1 July 1965||Age||74|
|Place of Death||Waimate, New Zealand|
|Notices||Internal Affairs 14 Jul 1965|
|Memorial or Cemetery||Waimate Lawn Cemetery|
|Memorial Reference||RSA Section, Plot 0016RS000018|
|New Zealand Memorials|
Richard was born at Waimate on 12 October 1890, the youngest son of Henry (1855-1897) and Emily Sylvia (1862-1957, nee Hare) Hawkins. His father was born in Ardley, Oxfordshire, England and his mother Emily, daughter of William and Caroline Hare, was born at Waikuku, New Zealand.
Richard was employed as a brick maker for James Tiffen at Makikihi and was living at Carter Street, Waimate, when he enlisted at the age of 26 on 7 May 1917. He was described as being single, Anglican, 5 foot 7 inches tall, weighing 131 pounds (59 kgs), chest measuring 32 – 35 inches, with pale complexion, hazel eyes and brown hair and good teeth. His mother, who was living at Cardiff Street, Waimate, was nominated as his next of kin. Posted to the Canterbury Infantry Regiment, he left with the 28th Reinforcements, 1st Battalion, C Company, from Wellington on 26 July 1917 on board (HMNZT 90) SS Ulimaroa, arriving in Plymouth, England, on 24 September 1917.
On arrival Richard marched into Sling Camp where he was posted to the 4th Reserve Battalion, Canterbury Infantry Regiment. Here they did intensive training in musketry and trench warfare. On 11 November was admitted to hospital at Tidworth until his return to his unit on 7 December. The Reserve Battalion left for France on 13 December where they marched into Etaples on 16 December 1917. A few days later on 22 December, he was marched into the Segregation camp, an isolation camp for infectious diseases, until being posted back to the Base Depot on 12 January 1918. He re-joined his unit on 17 January, but on 8 February, was admitted to 3 NZ Field Hospital. On 13 February he was admitted to 63 Casualty Clearance Station, transferred to 14 General Hospital at Boulogne on 20 February, and embarked for England on a hospital ship 22 February where he was admitted to 2 NZ General Hospital at Walton, suffering from bronchitis. On 1 March 1918 he was transferred to 1 NZ General Hospital at Brockenhurst where he stayed until transfer to NZ Convalescent Hospital at Hornchurch on 12 June. Here he remained but was transferred to the not on strength roll on 9 August.
Classified as unfit by medical board on 30 September he was transferred to the Convalescent Depot at Codford on 5 October. On 8 November 1918 he embarked at Plymouth on board SS Tofua for his return to NZ, arriving at Port Chalmers on 21 December 1918. It appears that Richard’s health was not the best as he attending Waimate Hospital in January 1919 and was recommended as an inpatient as from 22 August. He was finally medically boarded at Featherston Military Hospital on 3 December and placed on sick leave from 4 December to his final discharge as no longer physically fit for war service on account of illness contracted on active service on 31 December 1919. He had served a total of 2 years and 218 days and was later awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal.
Electoral Rolls show him as living at Cardiff Street, Waimate in 1919, his occupation ‘labourer’. On 20 February 1923 he married Irene Bertha Wright (1901-1996) and they went on to have two children. In 1928 they were living at Timaru Road, Waimate, and from 1935 to 1954 they were at 17 Holmes Street Waimate, his occupation given as labourer. From 1954 his wife was listed in Christchurch. In 1957 he was listed at Upper Mill Road, Waimate, a pensioner, and 1963 at Willowbridge. Richard died at Waimate on 1 July 1965 aged 74 years, and is buried in the Waimate Lawn Cemetery, RSA Section.
Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [June 2017]; Assorted records at Ancestry.com [June 2017]; Pearls Family History website at http://home.clear.net.nz/pages/pearlw/sitemap.htm; Waimate Cemetery headstone transcription (South Canterbury Branch NZSG cemetery records) [06 Febryary 2017]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) 06 February 2017]
No documents available.
Researched and Written by
Ted Hansen, SC branch NZSG
Currently Assigned to
Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License unless otherwise stated.
Tell us more
Do you have information that could be added to this story? Or related images that you are happy to share? Submit them here!