Lieutenant Colonel William George MALONE
Lieutenant Colonel William George. (Twice Mentioned in Despatches)
No. 10/1039. HQ, (Commanding Officer), Wellington Battalion, New Zealand Expeditionary Force
Born 24th January 1859 at London, England
Educated: Private schools in England and France
Married; Barrister, Farmer and Soldier, of Opunake Road, Stratford, Taranaki, NZ.
Next of Kin listed as: Wife; Ida Katherine Malone, of Opunake Rd, Stratford, Taranaki, NZ and of: Care of National Bank, 17 Moorgate St, London, England
Photos of Colonel Malone are known to exist in the following locations:
Cunningham frontispiece & p72. Weir pXII. Group photo Auckland Weekly News 3 Sep 1914 p47 & (group of Stratford, Taranaki, men) 8 Jul 1915 p46. Otago Witness 25 Aug 1915 p38. Auckland Weekly News 26 Aug 1915 p38. Group photo: Canterbury Times 2 Sep 1914 p35
Killed in Action
8th August 1915
at Chunuk Bair, northern Anzac sector
11th (Taranaki) Company, Wellington Battalion, NZEF
Primus in Armis
(First in Arms)
Wife's address also given as: 57 Upland Road, Wellington, NZ. (Canterbury Times 18 Aug 1915 p59).
Mentioned in Sir Ian Hamilton's despatch, London, 5 August 1915. (Canterbury Times 11 Aug 1915 p32). Arrived in New Zealand in 1880. Was chairman of the Ngaire (Taranaki) Road Board, 1885-90. Member of Hawera County Council Hospital & Charitable Aid Board 1885-90. Clerk and treasurer, Stratford County Council 1890-97. Admitted as a solicitor in the Supreme Court, 1894; barrister 1899.
Two sons - Edward and Terence, also at Anzac. Terence was severely wounded. A third son, Maurice, was with the 6th NZ Reinforcements. Sister, Miss Nova Malone, was a Red Cross nurse in England. (Canterbury Times 18 Aug 1915 p60 & Auckland Weekly News 19 Aug p21). Mentioned In Despatches, (Auckland Weekly News 12 Aug 1915 p19).
Senior partner, Malone, Anderson and Johnston of New Plymouth, Stratford and Inglewood. Unsuccessfully stood for parliament 'on one or two occasions.' (Southland Times 14 Aug 1915 p6).
Letter from Colonel Malone referring to Quinn's Post appears in the Wanganui Herald 22 Sep 1915 p6.
'Colonel W.G. Malone had a narrow escape at the landing at Gaba Tepe. A spent bullet or a piece of a shell grazing his neck. The wound was not serious, and being attended to on the spot, the Colonel did not leave the firing line.' (Inglewood Record & Waitara Age 21 Jun 1915 p3).
Killed in the attack on Chunuk Bair. The Wellington Battalion was holding a line on Rhododendron Ridge, just below the crest of Chunuk Bair, where it was waiting for reinforcement by the Auckland Mounted Rifles, also engaged in heavy fighting:
'While this reinforcement had been making its slow and difficult advance, the Wellington Battalion had for hours been engaged in one of the most desperate struggles ever fought by Anzac troops. The solitary machine-gun had been served until all its crew were dead or wounded. There were no bombs, and for rifle ammunition the troops had to rely on what each man had carried and what they could get from the dead. ...for all practical purposes Wellington had been cut off. The troops were weary almost to exhaustion ...shortly after the arrival of the Auckland Mounted Rifles there began a very violent bombardment of the slope by Turkish batteries firing from the south. ...It appears to have been followed by a succession of attacks - hand grenades coming over fifty at a time, the enemy getting out of their trenches and advancing with officers at their head, the New Zealanders shooting them as they rose. This effort of the enemy, like its predecessors, was beaten back. But, a shell bursting near his headquarters, the gallant Malone was killed. ...Of the 760 of the Wellington Battalion who had captured the height that morning, there came out only 70 unwounded or slightly wounded men. Throughout that day not one had dreamed of leaving his post. Their uniforms were torn, their knees broken. They had had no water since the morning; they could only talk in whispers; their eyes were sunken; their knees trembled; some broke down and cried like children.'
(Bean V1 p509-10, 515; V2 p15-16, 36-7, 247, 250-1, 637, 666, 671, 673, 674, 675, 676, killed 678; mentioned 680, 681. p677, 678, [679 quoted]).
Numerous references are made to Colonel Malone in Cunningham's The Wellington Regiment :
'Towards 5 p.m., the shelling seemed to have ceased and Lieutenant-Colonel Malone and Major Schofield stood up together in the trench with the idea of looking over the ground and deciding the dispositions of the troops to be maintained during the night and where the men of the Auckland Regiment might most profitably be employed. Just at this moment, the Turk fired his last salvo and the gallant Colonel fell with a ball through the head while Colonel [sic] Schofield received a ball through the lung. Throughout that long and arduous day, Lieut.-Col Malone had fought with his men and none knew better what a magnificent fight they had put up. Armed only with an entrenching tool, he had, time after time, dashed in among the firing lines when the Turks threatened to break through, encouraging his men with his words and example. He was firmly resolved that the Regiment would rather perish than yield the hill.' (Cunningham p74 - 75).
It is now known that Colonel Malone was in fact killed by 'friendly fire'; a shell fired either from a British warship, or from within the old Anzac lines.
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