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Online Cenotaph

Alexander McRae Forbes

  • Service number
    12/3218 AWMM
  • Also known as
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Last rank
    Inter War Captain AWMM
  • War
    World War I, 1914-1918 AWMM
12/3218 Lieutenant Alec McRae Forbes. Mickle, A. M. R. (n.d.) Mickle album. Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tamaki Paenga Hira. PH-ALB-561. p.8. No known copyright restrictions.
12/3218 Lieutenant Alec McRae Forbes. Mickle, A. M. R. (n.d. … Read more


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Alexander McRae AWMM
  • Surname
    Forbes AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    12/3218 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion
    Baptist AWMM

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Date of birth
    • 15 January 1895 AWMM
    • 15 January 1895 Peter Dennis, UNSW Canberra
  • Place of birth
    • Wellington, New Zealand AWMM
    • Wellington, New Zealand Peter Dennis, UNSW Canberra
  • Birth notes
    • Wellington, New Zealand AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
    WW1 Bookbinder AWMM
    JF Leighton AWMM
  • Post war occupation
    Book binder and commercial traveller AWMM
  • Address before enlistment
    Pre 08 Jul 1915 Palmerston Road, Birkenhead, New Zealand AWMM
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    J. McRae Forbes (father), Palmerston Road, Birkenhead, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Relationship status
    Pre 13 Nov 1915 Single AWMM


Wars and conflicts

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  • War
    World War I, 1914-1918 AWMM
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    12/3218 AWMM
  • Military service
    • Eden Rifle Cadets volunteers 1 March 1910 AWMM
    • Col.Sergt Cadets AWMM
    • 54 Company A.S.C. 1914 AWMM
    • 3rd Auckland Regiment C.D.D. 1 March 1911 AWMM
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    • Military Cross (MC) AWMM
      Citation for Military Cross: 'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty, on 29th September 1918, in the attack east of Ribecourt. He commanded the left front company of the battalion, and when a gap occurred between him and the troops on his left side, he filled it with his reserve platoon. Largely owing to his initiative, five 7cm guns, one 4in. howitzer, one 6in. howitzer and two naval guns were captured. After reaching his objective, he pushed forward to reconnoiter the company front as far as the Canal. His wortk throughout being most praiseworthy.' AWMM
    • 1914-1915 Star AWMM
    • British War Medal (1914-1920) AWMM
    • Victory Medal AWMM
    • War Medal 1939-1945 AWMM
    • New Zealand War Service Medal AWMM
    • Military Cross (MC) AWMM
      London Gazette 01/02/1919 AWMM

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
    Trentham Camp 1915 AWMM
  • Enlistment
    WW1 8 July 1915 AWMM
    Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Age on enlistment
    WW1 20 AWMM


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  • Embarkation details
    WW1 13 November 1915 AWMM from Wellington, New Zealand AWMM HMNZT 35 or HMNZT 36 AWMM
    Vessel was Willochra or Tofua AWMM
    Second Lieutenant AWMM
    Auckland Infantry Battalion AWMM
    8th Reinforcements AWMM

Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes
    • Height, Unknown Period AWMM
      5 feet 6 1/4 inches AWMM
    • Hair colour, Unknown Period AWMM
      Brown AWMM
    • Eye colour, Unknown Period AWMM
      Brown AWMM
    • Complexion, Unknown Period AWMM
      Clear AWMM
    • Hospital Diseases , Wounds, WWI AWMM
      Bayonet wound to thigh - severe - in Frances. Transferred to Brighton Hospital, 23 February 1917. AWMM
    • Died of Disease, Cause of Death AWMM
      Heart failure AWMM
    • Height, WWI AWMM
      5' 6.5" AWMM
    • Weight, WWI AWMM
      160 lb AWMM

Last known rank

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  • Last rank
    Inter War 2 June 1919 AWMM
    End of war AWMM
    Captain AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Alexander Forbes was a Justice of the Peace.

    Aide-de-Camp to the Prince of Wales during the Somme Battle

    Aide-de-Camp to Major General Sir George Richardson (after the war)

    Town Major in Ypres.

    Alexander's family resided on Palmerston Road, Birkenhead (Source: AWMM Research)

    Wounded in action, 21 February 1917 (bayonet wound, left thigh); transferred to England, and admitted to Cambridge research Hospital, 24 February 1917; transferred to Convalescent Hospital, Brighton, 24 April 1917.
    Discharged on leave, 26 April 1917, to report to NZ Reserve Group, Sling Camp, 9 May 1917; qualified as instructor in grenades at Southern Command Grenade School, Lyndhurst, 4-16 June 1917.
    Proceeded overseas to France, 12 July 1917, rejoined Bn, in the field, 10 August 1917.
    Detached to NZ Wing, 2nd Anzac Reinforcements Camp, 30 September 1917; rejoined Bn from detachment, 12 November 1917.
    Promoted Captain, 31 October 1917.
    Detached to NZ Division Traffic Control, 12 November 1917.
    Transferred to 1st Bn, Auckland Infantry Regiment, 18 February 1918.
    Appointed Company Commander, 15 April 1918; relinquished command as Company Commander, 7 October 1918.
    Marched in to Sling Camp from France, 3 February 1919.
    Commenced return to New Zealand on board HMNZT 'Remuera', 17 March 1919; appointment terminated (discharged), 2 June 1919.
    Medals: Military Cross, 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal AWMM
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About death

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  • Age at death
    74 AWMM
  • Date of death
    24 December 1969 AWMM
  • Cause of death
    Died of Disease AWMM
  • Place of death
    Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Death notes
    Auckland Hospital, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Cemetery name
    Waikumete Cemetery, Glen Eden, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Grave reference
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference
  • Obituary

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Leave a tribute or memory of Alexander McRae Forbes

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  • This was my grandfather. He was very respected by the troops he lead and I can remember as a young child when he is ill from the long term effects of the war( I was told he had been gased and this contributed to his illness). Many of his old army comrades would come over and recall the old days. He was proud of the time the Prince of Wales came to New Zealand in 1935 and my grandfather went to see him and as the prince passed by he called out to him by name. He as thrilled he remembered him. He was a great man and lived a good life. He carried a picture of my grandmother who was only his girlfriend at the time all through the war and we still have all the letters and cards he sent her. They are truly beautiful and a reminder of the importance of the people back home were to them. It certainly gave him hope of returning home
    Public - Kay Frances - Other Relative - 8 May 2015



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08 May 2015Kay FrancesLondon,EnglandOther Relative