On Tuesday, 9 April 2019 we honoured Private Richard Davies Hanson at a Last Post Ceremony.
Richard was born in 1885 in Adelaide, South Australia, to mother Emma Hanson. He was 31 years old working as a member of the Northern Territory Police Force when he enlisted to the AIF – the Australian Imperial Forces – in June 1916.
In October 1916 Richard left Melbourne for overseas service aboard the HMAT Ulysses, where he arrived in Plymouth, England to join the 9th Australian Machine Gun Company.
On his arrival, Richard undertook a 6-week training course on the ‘Vickers’ Machine Gun at the Machine-Gun Training Depot at Grantham.
He was then deployed to France where he served with the 9th Australian Machine Gun Company providing supporting fire to the 9th Infantry Brigade during the attack on Messines Ridge. During the early hours on the 7th of June 1917, the attack on Messines commenced with the detonation of 19 mines under the German Front Lines.
The following day on the 8th of June Richard was wounded in action when struck with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. He was immediately transferred to the 11th Casualty Clearing Station where he died of his wounds.
His name is listed on the Cenotaph, amongst fellow Territorians who died while serving. His is but one of the many stories of service and sacrifice to be told at the Cenotaph.