Thomas Arthur BOND DSO, MiD

BOND, Thomas Arthur

Service Number: Officer
Enlisted: 17 August 1914, Brisbane, Queensland
Last Rank: Lieutenant Commander
Last Unit: 1st Royal Australian Naval Bridging Train
Born: Bishops Waltham, Hampshire, England, 1865
Home Town: Hamilton, Queensland
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Accountant/Stockbroker
Died: Natural causes (illness), Kangaroo Point, Queensland, 4 September 1942
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
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World War 1 Service

17 Aug 1914: Enlisted Australian Naval & Military Expeditionary Forces (New Guinea 1914), Sub Lieutenant, Royal Australian Navy, Brisbane, Queensland
19 Aug 1914: Promoted Australian Naval & Military Expeditionary Forces (New Guinea 1914), Lieutenant, Royal Australian Navy, Royal Australian Navy Reserves
11 Sep 1914: Involvement Australian Naval & Military Expeditionary Forces (New Guinea 1914), Lieutenant, SN Officer, Royal Australian Navy, German New Guinea
17 Jan 1915: Discharged Australian Naval & Military Expeditionary Forces (New Guinea 1914), Lieutenant, SN Officer, Royal Australian Navy Reserves, Discharged to take up appointment with the AIF
24 Feb 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Lieutenant, Brisbane, Queensland
4 Jun 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Lieutenant, 1st Royal Australian Naval Bridging Train, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
4 Jun 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Lieutenant, 1st Royal Australian Naval Bridging Train, HMAT Port Macquarie, Melbourne
19 Oct 1920: Discharged Lieutenant Commander, 1st Royal Australian Naval Bridging Train

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Biography contributed by Paul Trevor

'Thomas Arthur Bond was born in 1865 in Hampshire, England to George and Charlotte Bond. He worked as an accountant at the hardware store of Perry Bros Ltd in Brisbane. When war broke out in August 1914 he joined – at age 49 – the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force (AN&MEF) in operations against German possessions in the Pacific region. Bond had previously volunteered with the Queensland Maritime Defence Force. On 11 September 1914 the force attacked the wireless station at Bitapaka in German New Guinea.

Bond was awarded the Distinguished Service Order in recognition of his services. The London Gazette of 11 January 1916 published the following, 'Lieutenant Thomas Arthur Bond, R.A.N.R. On 11th September, 1914, during the attack upon the Wireless Station, Bita Paka, German New Guinea, Lieutenant Bond displayed conspicuous ability and coolness under fire in leading his men through most difficult country and enforcing the terms of surrender whilst drawing off an attack by another body of the enemy. He showed great daring, when accompanied by only one officer and one man, in suddenly disarming eight Germans in the presence of 20 German native troops drawn up under arms, all of whom were then marched off and held prisoners. Later he personally captured five armed natives.'

When these duties were completed, Bond was appointed First Lieutenant to Lieutenant Commander Bracegirdle of the 1st Royal Australian Navy Bridging Train (RANBT) when it was formed in February 1915. On 3 June 1915 the contingent sailed from Melbourne aboard A39, HMAT PORT MACQUARIE, arriving in Lemnos on 21 July. The RANBT served in the Gallipoli, Sinai and Palestine campaigns. Bond was again mentioned in despatches. In July 1916 he was mentioned ‘for distinguished and gallant services rendered during the period of General Sir Charles Munro’s Command of the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force’.

In March 1916 he was transferred to the Royal Navy in the Administrative Headquarters at Alexandria; he was posted to the depot ship HMS HANNIBAL for the remainder of the war.

On 22 November 1919 Bond departed from England aboard the SS AENEAS bound for Australia; he arrived in Brisbane on 14 January 1920 – his mother Charlotte had died the previous year. At this time Bond was admitted to the 27th AAH for treatment of a war wound – a gun shot wound to the upper left forearm. He was in hospital until August 1920. He was also medically unfit for service due to Dupuytren’s contraction – where the fingers bend towards the palm, unable to be fully extended. Bond’s service was finally terminated on 19 October 1920.

For his war service Bond was awarded the 1914/1915 Star, the British War Medal, the Victory medal and two oak leaves for his Distinguished Service Order. In 1922 he also applied for the Volunteer Officers' Decoration. Thomas Bond died in Kangaroo Point, Brisbane on 4 September 1942, survived by his wife Gladys.' LINK (

'The Battle on the Road to Bita Paka, 11 September 1914.

...when the well-armed naval reinforcement group led by Lt. Thomas Bond reached the advance party, Bond became the leader, the sixth change. Lt. Bond had in his group a machine gun section.

The final clash occurred when the advance was closer to the wireless station. Gunfire from entrenched troops caused more casualties. Those killed were Able Seaman H.W. Street; those wounded were: Able Seaman J. H. Tonks and T. Sullivan.

Now close to the wireless station, Bond made the decision to take forward a small group leaving the main party consolidating after the last clash. Bond had with him at this critical moment, only a senior German Officer Lt. Kempf and Captain R.J.A. Travers, army intelligence officer, and Corporal C. C. Eitel, an interpreter. Nearer the wireless station Bond was confronted by a heavily armed group of 8 German officers and 20 native police, apparently intent on defending the wireless station. Lt. Bond, aware he was covered, acted swiftly and daringly. He bounded to the Germans and snatched pistols from their holsters. Another surprise act that so stunned the Germans and the native soldiers that they succumbed. The Germans and natives were so positioned, natives at rear of officers, that the natives could not fire with the officers between them and Bond’s group.

For that resolute act, Lt. Bond was awarded the DSO. This was the first Australian decoration awarded in WWI.' READ MORE (