Monday, October 14, 2013

Trooper George Taylor from Trooper Charles Mahon's letter

Trooper George Taylor embarked with the Canterbury Mounted Rifles on 14 December 1914 as part of the 2nd reinforcements.  He joined his brother Trooper Mitford Taylor who had left with the Main Body on 16 October 1914 and survived the war.  George was sadly killed in action on 12 June 1915 he is buried at Canterbury Cemetery, Anzac Cove, Gallipoli, Turkey. 

The Canterbury Cemetery is one of the central cemeteries in Anzac and was made after the Armistice. It contains the graves of 27 Commonwealth Servicemen of the First World War, five of them unidentified. 20 of the graves are of men of the New Zealand Mounted Rifles (mostly the Canterbury Mounted Rifles),%20ANZAC

Below is an extract from the Marlborough Express on George Taylor's death.  Such extracts nearly always reported that death was instantaneous whilst this was the case for some, often it was reported to the families to spare them the harsh truth that death was often painful and slow.

Mr M. Taylor of Para has received details showing how his son Trooper George Taylor met his death: "We were on outpost duty about a mile from the main camp when it happened," writes a comrade. "George was looking out through one of the loopholes in the trenches. A bullet from a sniper came right through the loophole, hitting him in the head death being instantaneous. We are all very sorry to lose him as there was hardly a better liked  fellow in the squadron."

Sadly for the Taylor family back in Koromiko, Marlborough George was not the only member to lose his life during the war.  I found a further two brothers who served Leonard Taylor who embarked with the 18th reinforcements on 16 October 1916 and who survived the war and Thomas Gledhill Taylor who embarked on 13 November 1917 with the 29th Reinforcements.   Thomas died of Jaundice on 5 November 1918 in Egypt and he is buried at Cairo War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt, only days away from the end of the war.

Both brothers were remembered on a plaque in the Koromiko Church and I would love to know if the plaque is still there today.

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