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28306 Private Albert Wilford Cross, KiA 3/12/1917

21146 Private Percival Harry Cross

Brothers - KiA Pair and Plaque and Pair

  • The British War Medal, Victory Medal and Memorial Plaque issued in commemoration of 28306 Albert Wilford Cross, who was killed in action at Polderhoek Chateau on 3rd December 1917. Together with the British War Medal, Victory Medal to 21146 Percival Harry Cross, with his Pay Book, Discharge Certificate Proficiency Certificate for Non Commissioned Officers.


    Albert Cross was born 23rd May 1896 at Wellington, New Zealand. Son of William George and Clara Edith Cross (née Backhouse). At the time of his enlistment in June 1916 he was working as a plumber in central Wellington.  He embarked with the 18th Reinforcements, and served on the Western Front with 13 Company, 1st Battalion, Canterbury Infantry Regiment from March 1917. He spent several months on attachment to Brigade HQ working as a plumber before returning to his unit in September 1917. Cross was killed in action on 3rd December 1917 at Polderhoek Chateau. He has no known grave, and is commemorated on the Buttes New British Cemetery (N.Z.) Memorial, Polygon Wood.


    Percival Cross was born in Wellington on 22nd December 1892, so is the older brother of Albert.  At the time of his enlistment in May 1916 Cross was working in the accountants branch of the General Post Office. He was also serving as a quartermaster sergeant in the Post and Telegraph Rifles. Just prior to his enlistment he married Esther Grantham. He embarked with his brother, in the 18th Reinforcements, and served on the Western Front with 1st Battalion, Wellington Infantry Regiment from 3rd June 1917. Just a week later, during the Battle of Messines, he suffered a shrapnel wound to his ribs and back and was evacuated to 3rd Canadian General Hospital. He was medically downgraded, and transferred to the NZ Army Postal Corps in August 1917. He returned to the UK, and embarked for New Zealand in January 1918.


    Both medal groups are correctly impressed: 22306 PTE. A.W. CROSS. N.Z.E.F. and 21146 PTE. P.H. CROSS. N.Z.E.F. and the Memorial Plaque is correctly embossed ALBERT WILFORD CROSS. The ephemera illustrated is all related to PH Cross.

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