Corporal John Hurst Edmondson VC
Date of birth: 8 October 1914
Place of birth: Wagga Wagga, NSW
Date of death: 14 April 1941
Place of death: Tobruk, Libya
Jack Edmondson was born in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, later moving to Liverpool where he worked on his parents’ farm. After service in the militia, he enlisted in the AIF and was promoted to corporal soon afterwards. He embarked for the Middle East with the 2/17th Australian Infantry Battalion in October 1940 and trained in Palestine.
In April 1941 German infantry breached the defences at Tobruk, establishing machine-guns, mortars, and field-guns. A seven-man section, including Edmondson, charged the position. Although wounded in the neck and stomach, Edmondson continued to advance under heavy fire, killing one German with his bayonet. He later killed another two Germans, saving the life of his platoon commander, but he succumbed to his wounds soon after the German attack was defeated. His citation noted that Edmondson’s actions during the operation “were outstanding for resolution, leadership and conspicuous bravery”.