Brigadier General James Heane, James 'Cast Iron Jimmy', DSO, CMG, CB

Date of birth1874-12-29 Australia: New South Wales, Sydney 
Date promoted  1916-02-01  Promoted to Lieutenant Colonel. 
Date returned to Australia  1919-09-06   
Date of death1954-08-20 Australia: New South Wales, Sydney, Collaroy 

Heane was born in Sydney, NSW, in 1874, and served enthusiastically in the cadets as a young man. In 1899 he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the militia, serving with 3 Australian Infantry Regiment and 2 Light Horse Regiment. On the outbreak of war in 1914, he joined the AIF, becoming a captain with 4 Infantry Battalion. By the time of the landing at Gallipoli, he had been promoted to major and placed in command of D Company. He quickly earned the nickname 'Cast Iron Jimmy' amongst his men for his coolness and apparent invulnerability to enemy fire, and in May 1915 was awarded the Distinguished Service Order. During the attack on Lone Pine on 6 August 1915, Heane was slightly wounded in the neck while crossing No Man's Land. Passing the first line of Turkish trenches, he was hit in the thigh by a bullet which passed through the lower pocket of his jacket. He lay on the ground until about 8 pm, when he was again wounded by shell splinters in the hand, knee, and right shoulder. His wounds caused Heane to be evacuated to hospital in Egypt, and he was not fit to rejoin his unit before the evacuation of Anzac in December. In early 1916, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel and placed in command of 1 Battalion, which was about to move to the Western Front. He proved a successful leader on the Western Front, rising to command 2 Australian Infantry Brigade as colonel, and being appointed Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) and Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG). He was also awarded the Belgian Croix de Guerre and seven times mentioned in despatches. Between the wars, Heane was a successful orchardist, and was also leader of the secretive far right wing 'Old Guard' movement in NSW. During the Second World War, he held command of the state Volunteer Defence Corps units, but retired in 1942. 'Cast Iron Jimmy' Heane died in Sydney in August 1954.