25816 Thomas Frederick Cooper, NZEF.
NZEF Pair, SWB, ID Bracelet - Cooper
The British War Medal and Victory Medal pair to 25816 Rifleman Thomas Frederick Cooper, 1st Battalion, 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade. With the group is a Silver War Badge numbered NZ5296. This is confirmed to be the one issued to Cooper (refer Certificate of Character on Discharge from the Expeditionary Force on his service file). Also included is Cooper's ID bracelet, and a miniature Iron Cross, this being unmarked.
Thomas Cooper, originally from Nottinghamshire, was working at the Kaiteratahi Freezing Works near Gisborne when he enlisted for service with the NZEF. His next of kin is recorded as a friend, Eleanor Trigg, but Cooper in fact married Eleanor in August 1916, just prior to embarking. Sailing with the 17th Reinforcements, Cooper served on the Western Front with C Company, 1st Battalion, 3rd New Zealand Rifle Brigade from February 1917. On 17th August 1917, whilst serving in the Warneton sector, Cooper was wpunded in his left thigh and left hand and evacuated to the UK. He was subsquently delcared medically unfit and returned to New Zealand for discharge.
In later life Cooper worked as a postman in Wellington before moving to Auckland, where he died in 1957.
Both medals are correctly impressed 25816 RFLM. T. F. COOPER. N.Z.E.F.