Francis Dynes was the eldest son of William Dynes, of Matatoki. His brother, William Dynes, also served in France.
The following extracts are taken from newspaper cuttings (no dates available). The originals are in the possession of the Dynes family:
"Sergeant Frank Dynes, who was killed in action on September 26, was the eldest son of Mr Wm Dynes, of Matatoki. His age was 24 years, and he was born at Thames, and brought up at Puriri. He left with the Main Body, and was wounded at Gallipoli. After returning home he left again with one of the reinforcements drafts, and was wounded the second time in France. After again recovering he met his death in the firing-line. His only brother, W. Dynes, who enrolled three times before he was finally accepted, is now serving in France."
"In fond and loving memory of our dear son and brother, Sergeant Francis R. Dynes, who was killed in action in the Somme Battle, Sept. 26th, 1916.
Only the grave of a hero,
Only a mound of earth
Far from the Land of the Kauri,
The spot that gave him birth.
But in the cause of the Empire
He answered his country's call,
And in the field of far-off France,
He gave his life - his all.
Inserted by his sorrowing parents, sisters, and brother."
"DYNES - In fond and loving memory of our dear son and brother, Sergeant Francis R. Dynes, who was killed in action in the Somme battle, September 26, 1916.
In memories he lives with us always.
The battle was not of their making.
And was was never their plan;
Yet, all that is sweet forsaking,
They marched to it, man by man.
It was either to smite or be smitten.
There's no other choice to-day.
And they live, as befits the Anzac,
Or they die, as the Anzac may.
Inserted by his sorrowing parents, sisters and brother."
"DYNES - In proud and loving memory of our dear brother, Sergeant F.R. Dynes, of the Sixth Hauraki Company, Main Body, who was killed in action at the Soome on September 26, 1916; aged 24 years.
One of the best, a loving brother
A friend both kind and true.
So dearly loved, so sadly missed
By all the friends he knew.
Nobly he did his duty
And answered his country's call;
Somewhere in France, on the battlefield,
He gave his life - his all.
Inserted by his loving sister and brother-in-law, N. and E. Brown."
The following story also appeared in the newspaper:
'A story of a faithful dog. A valuable gun dog met his death in Paeroa last week by being run over by a motor-car. He was not killed right out, but succumbed to the injuries after a few days. The animal's name was "Shot". Everyone knew him, more especially children, who always met him with a pat on the back. "Shot" would not have an obituary notice only for the fact that there was a history attached to his career. He was originally owned by Frank Dynes, one-time employed at the local dairy factory. Frank, on enlisting in the early stages of the war, left his dog with some lady friends for safe custody. After a comparatively short service his master was wounded and was sent back to Paeroa. He, however, gradually improved, and, like a true Briton, proffered his services again for active service, and he once more sought the battlefront. This time, after a brief period, he met his death through a bursting shell. His lady friends claimed the animal of the true and brave soldier. "Shot" was well cared for in memory of his dead master. There are not many who have returned invalided from the horrors of war who volunteered service a second time as did the late Frank Dynes, whose parents reside at Matatoki. He has found "his" Excelsior.'
The Auckland Museum Library's manuscripts collection also holds two field service postcards, which allowed a soldier no writing space, only a series of options from which to choose. Both cards are addressed to Mrs E.A. Brown, Matatoki, Thames (Dynes' sister). Dyne indicated on his card, dated 27 July 1916, that he had received no mail from his sister for some time. On 6 September 1916, the card acknowledges receipt of a letter. [Ref. MS 2002/202]. Dynes' 1914-15 Star, in its original box, his identity tag, a coloured postcard from Cologne and a New Zealand Railway pass are also part of the collection. Some of the items havedigital copies attached to this record.
Embarked from Suez, Egypt, aboard SS Tahiti on 7 August 1915, disembarking at New Zealand on 11 September 1915.
Reported for duty and joined the 11th Reinforcements on 3 March 1916.
Embarked for a second time from New Zealand aboard SS Maunganui on 2 April 1916, arriving at Suez, Egypt, on 3 May 1916. Embarked from Alexandria aboard SS Caledonia for France on 10 May 1916. Rejoined 1st Battalion, Auckland Infantry Regiment, on 22 June 1916, at Armentieres. AWMM