|Notes for James Robert HAY|
|Enlisted in the 15th Light Horse Regiment during WW1|
The 15th Light Horse Regiment was formed in Palestine in June 1918 from members of the Australian companies of the Imperial Camel Corps (ICC). The ICC had been disbanded because camel-mounted troops, a valuable addition to the British forces in the deserts of Egypt and the Sinai, were not suitable for the conditions being encountered in Palestine. Although many former light horse troopers were to be found in the ranks of the ICC, large numbers had also been recruited from infantry battalions and so several months of training were needed before the 15th was fit to commence operations as a horse-mounted regiment. The new regiment, along with another regiment of former cameleers - the 14th - and a regiment of French colonial cavalry, formed the 5th Light Horse Brigade, which became part of the Australian Mounted Division.
The 5th Light Horse Brigade fought in only one major operation - the great offensive launched by the battle of Megiddo on 19 September 1918. On this morning British infantry opened a gap in the Turkish front to the north of Jaffa, allowing mounted forces to penetrate deep into their rear areas, severing roads, railways and communications links. In ensuing days the Turkish front collapsed and as the Turks retreated into Syria they were harried by mounted troops, supported by aircraft, in close pursuit. In ten days from 19 September, the 5th Light Horse Brigade advanced over 650 kilometres. The Brigade entered Damascus on 1 October 1918, and carried out mopping-up and garrison tasks in the vicinity of Damascus for most of October. The Brigade was moving forward to join the drive on Aleppo when Turkey surrendered on 30 October. While waiting to embark for home, the 15th Light Horse were called back to operational duty to quell the Egyptian revolt that erupted in March 1919; order was restored in little over a month. THE EGYPTIAN RISING.
But the dreams of Australia were not yet to be realised. An Egyptian rebellion had broken out, and so urgent at the outset was the call for mounted men that even the convalescents from the hospitals were enlisted. All Australian troops, except the 1st and 2nd L.H. Regiments (which had already embarked for Australia), were sent into the disturbed area.
There was no actual organised fighting, but the rebellion took the form of murders of soldiers and European civilians, looting, tearing up railways, destruction of bridges, telegraph and telephone lines, etc., and there was a lot more patrolling to be done before it was quelled.
At Kantara on the 24th March, 150 horses and 150 mules were drawn from the remount depot, and by 6 p.m. that evening the Regiment was again fully equipped as a mobile column. On the 26th the Regiment entrained for Damanhour, where headquarters were established and from there squadron moved out on patrols. Many villages were searched, arms and ammunition were found, and arrests were made. The rebellion was crushed, and the end of May saw the Regiment again at Kantara, cleaning equipment for handing in to ordnance stores, prior to embarkation for Australia. Our horses, which had so splendidly served throughout the long years, were never to return to Australia, and were parted with with very real sorrow and affection. On the 28th June, 1919, all the men marched to the wharf at Kantara, each man got his kit bag from the stack facing the wharf, embarkation rolls were checked, and the members of the 5th L.H. Regiment (what were left of them) filed up the gangway of the 'Madras' to return to their home country.
The Regiment arrived at Fremantle, W.A., on the 24th July, and at Melbourne on the 31st July, 1919.
The men of the 15th Light Horse sailed for home without their horses, which had either been shot or transferred to Indian cavalry units, on 24 July 1919. As a successor to the ICC, the 15th Light Horse inherited its battle honours
Name HAY, JAMES ROBERT
Service Australian Army
Service Number V388874
Date of Birth 6 Nov 1900
Place of Birth SCOTLAND
Date of Enlistment 18 Apr 1942
Locality on Enlistment KOONWARRA, VIC
Place of Enlistment MEENIYAN, VIC
Next of Kin HAY, RABY
Date of Discharge 15 Oct 1945
Posting at Discharge 23 BATTALION VOLUNTEER DEFENCE CORPS
WW2 Honours and Gallantry None for display
Prisoner of War No
DEATH: At his death, Jim was 65 years of age.
INQUEST: Inquest number 1705 of 1966, 1966-9-30.
Struck from behind by aÿvery solid Chrysler "Desoto"~1949 model.
Impact dents appear on front bonnet, breaking nose emblem, and
denting sun visor. Early in the morning, it had been raining prior to
accident, but the rain had stopped. Accident occurred 96 feet east of the
corner Park Rd and Toorak Rd, Glen Iris. Driver noticed the bicycle
too late, skidded and hit Jim from behind. Driver sought help from
local households but to no avail. Pronounced dead at Box Hill
Hospital. Accident appeared to be just around the corner from where
Jim lived in Glen Iris.
|Last Modified 6 Jun 2005||Created 12 Mar 2008 by EasyTree for Windows95|