BLAKE, John Henry
(Service number 26/956)

First Rank Rifleman Last Rank Rifleman


Date 18 March 1879 Place of Birth Waimate

Enlistment Information

Date 1 October 1915 Age 36 years
Address at Enlistment 30 Bay Road, Kilbirnie, Wellington
Occupation Clerk (Railway Department)
Previous Military Experience 4 years Waimate Rifles - disbanded
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin Mrs W. BLAKE (mother), 30 Bay Road, Kilbirnie, Wellington
Religion Methodist
Medical Information

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 4th Battalion, D Company
Date 5 February 1916
Transport Ulimaroa or Mokoia or Navua
Embarked From Wellington Destination
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Rifle Brigade

Military Awards

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


Date 2 March 1919 Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

12 October 1917 wounded in action & admitted to hospital. 20 October 1917 discharged from hospital & rejoined unit.

Post-war Occupations


Date 1 May 1952 Age 73 years
Place of Death Levin
Memorial or Cemetery Tiro Tiro Road Cemetery, Levin
Memorial Reference Block RSA, Row 3, Plot 12
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

John Henry Blake was born on 18 March 1879 at Waimate, the eldest son of William and Elizabeth (née Mann) Blake. William and Elizabeth had married in 1878 at Waimate and went on to have eleven children born there. John was surely educated at Waimate District High School.

He was a clerk with the Railways Department, living at home, when he was called up and enlisted on 1 October 1915. Single and Methodist, he named his mother as next-of-kin – Mrs W. Blake, 30 Bay Road, Kilbirnie, Wellington. He had served for four years with the Waimate Rifles until the unit was disbanded. Rifleman J. H. Blake embarked with the New Zealand Rifle Brigade, departing from Wellington on 5 February 1916. He was wounded in action on 12 October 1917 and was admitted to hospital. After being in a serious condition, he was discharged from Hospital on 20 October and rejoined his unit. J. H. Blake, 26/956, of Kilbirnie, was one of more than 1150 who were due to arrive home in February 1919 by the “Oxfordshire” (Draft 207). He was discharged on 2 March 1919 and was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.

John married Ethel Lillian Maude Tustin in 1921 and they had one son. He died on 1 May 1952 at Levin and was buried in the Old Levin Cemetery (also known as Tiro Tiro Road Cemetery. His grave in the RSA block is marked by a services plaque. Ethel died in 1984 and is buried in the Old Levin Cemetery with her sister.

Four of his brothers also served in World War One – Charles Edward Blake, Leslie Walter Blake, George Stanley Blake and Allan Blake. His nephew, Flying Officer Eric George Blake, lost his life in World War Two. The name of Lance-Corp. J. H. Blake appeared regularly on the Waimate Daily Advertiser Roll of Honour under the sub-title of "Answered the Call".


Auckland War Memorial Museumm Cenotaph Database [04 July 2022]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [04 July 2022]; Tiro Tiro Road Cemetery, Levin burial record & headstone image (Horowhenua District Council) [09 July 2022]; Waimate Daily Advertiser, 30 May 1918, NZ Times, 29 January 1919 (Papers Past) [18 September 2019; 09 July 2022]

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, Teresa Scott, South Canterbury Genealogy Society

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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