Clarence Wells Didier DALY DSO, MID

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DALY, Clarence Wells Didier

Service Number: Officer
Enlisted: 19 August 1914, Melbourne, Victoria
Last Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
Last Unit: 6th Infantry Battalion
Born: Hobart, Tasmania, 5 May 1890
Home Town: Canterbury, Boroondara, Victoria
Schooling: Wesley College
Occupation: Soldier
Died: Killed in Action, France, 13 April 1918, aged 27 years
Cemetery: Hazebrouck Communal Cemetery
Plot 111, Row E. Grave 24
Memorials: Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour, Camberwell War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

19 Aug 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Captain, 6th Infantry Battalion, Melbourne, Victoria
19 Oct 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Captain, 6th Infantry Battalion, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
19 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Captain, 6th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Hororata, Melbourne
25 Apr 1915: Wounded 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli, GSW (calf)
16 May 1915: Promoted AIF WW1, Major, 6th Infantry Battalion
26 Apr 1917: Wounded 2nd occasion - GSW (leg)
13 Apr 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Lieutenant Colonel, SN Officer, 6th Infantry Battalion, German Spring Offensive 1918

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Biography

"...Lieutenant Colonel Clarence Wells Didier Daly, 6th Battalion... On 13 April 1918, Colonel Daly was taking up a support position in the Foret de Nieppe, to hold up the advance of the Germans at Hazebrouck. The night had been quiet but soon after 5 a.m. the Germans opened on the village of La Motte and its environs with 4.2 inch and 5.9 inch guns. Colonel Daly was riding on the La Motte-Vieuxberquin road, superintending the dispositions when he was killed with his favourite horse `Bobby'. He was buried with full military honours on the afternoon of 14 April, with Padre Carter performing the last rites. The impressive service was punctuated by the tearing crash of high explosives as the Germans shelled the vicinity consistently with huge 15 inch shells." - SOURCE (www.awm.gov.au)

"Clarence Wells Didier Daly was born on 5 May 1890 in Hobart, Tasmania and studied at Melbourne University. From about 1910 he served as a captain with the 64th (Melbourne) Infantry Regiment, a unit of the Commonwealth Military Forces. On the outbreak of the First World War he transferred to the AIF, enlisting on 19 August 1914. Daly was appointed as the captain of D Company, 6 Battalion and sailed with that unit from Melbourne aboard HMAT Hororata on 19 October.

On 25 April 1915, Daly led his men during the initial landings at Gallipoli, but received a gunshot wound to his calf. He was admitted to the 1st General Hospital five days later. He recovered and rejoined his unit on the peninsula on 26 May. Daly was promoted to major that same month and remained at Gallipoli for the rest of the campaign. Daly embarked for the Western Front on 25 March 1916 aboard the troopship Briton, disembarking at Marseilles on 30 March. He was appointed temporary commanding officer of 6 Battalion on 22 August. On 6 October he was recommended for the Distinguished Service Order, 'for consistent good work and devotion to duty. Since arrival in France Major Daly has been constantly at duty throughout the trench fighting at Sailly and again in the fighting at Pozieres on the Somme. He has displayed very great personal bravery. His coolness in trying circumstances has always exerted a good influence on the men around him and by this and by his energy and enthusiasm he has done much in building and maintaining the present standard of discipline and Esprit de Corps in his Battalion.', which was gazetted on 1 January 1917. He was twice mentioned in despatches in 1917 and again mentioned in despatches in 1918.

Daly was promoted to lieutenant colonel and commanding officer, 6 Battalion on 25 February 1917. He was detached to 2 Infantry Brigade as temporary commander on 16 July, rejoining his own unit on 24 July. Daly was killed in the early hours of 13 April 1918, just north of La Motte. After seeing his battalion posted in their positions on the night of 12-13 April, he rode further forward to reconnoitre the immediate area, accompanied by one of his officers, Lieutenant Reginald Thomas Pollard. At 5 am, Daly received a shell wound to the abdomen and according to eyewitness accounts, dismounted from his horse before collapsing. He was immediately carried to the Regimental Aid Post and attended to by 6 Battalion's regimental medical officer, Captain Archie Sheridan Cockburn MC. However, Daly never regained consciousness and died soon after. He was buried in the Military Section of the Hazebrouk Communal Cemetery." - SOURCE (www.awm.gov.au)

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