MILITARY MEDAL GV ‘155 SJT:J.R.GEDDES. 2/AUST:L.H.R.’, WITH MID’S EMBLEM.
155 Sergeant James Robinson Geddes served in 2nd South Africa Light Horse during the Boer War. He enlisted into the A Squadron, 2nd Light Horse Regiment on 31st August 1914. Promoted Corporal 8th May 1915, he landed in Gallipoli on 12th May 1915 and was wounded in action ‘GSW R thigh’ 7th August 1915, during the costly attacks from Quinn’s Post. Promoted Sergeant 1st Jan 1916, the 2nd Light Horse joined the ANZAC Mounted Division in Egypt and went on to serve with distinction during the Sinai and Palestine campaigns, as did Sergeant Geddes who was twice decorated for gallantry; in 1917 and 1918.
Sergeant Geddes was Killed in Action during a major German attack at ABU TELLUL on 14 July 1918. Here the 2nd Light Horse fought off a determined attack on their positions but with significant loss. Geddes’s troop under Lieutenant King was all but wiped out, gallantly defending their post, indeed every man was either killed or wounded. The 14th July attack cost the enemy at least 105 dead, 45 wounded and as well 425 prisoners were taken; 358 of the latter were Germans. This was, in fact, the only time in which the Asia Corps was known to have carried the primary role in an attack, or - as the Official History puts it – the German infantry was used as 'stormtroops' in Palestine. Australian losses amounted to 31 killed and 46 wounded. Sergeant Geddes is buried Jerusalem War Cemetery Palestine and interestingly his grave is featured in an Australian documentary ‘Beyond Beersheba’.
During WW1 members of the 2nd Light Horse was Awarded 14 MM’s and 27 MID’s, 3 men (including Geddes) were awarded both MM and MID.
Condition GVF, some contact wear. A superb and rare Award. The whereabouts of his other medal is unknown, they were sent to his Aunt in the early 1920’s.