Image copyright: Copyright expired - public domain
Public Domain Mark This image is in the Public Domain

ID number H06689
Collection Photograph
Object type Black & white - Print silver gelatin


Studio portrait of Second Lieutenant (2nd Lt) Gordon Breen, MM, 23rd Battalion. A blacksmith from Camperdown, VIC, prior to enlistment as a Private (Pte) on 10 March 1915, he embarked from Melbourne aboard HMAT Euripides on 8 May 1915 for Gallipoli. The battalion was withdrawn to Egypt in December 1915 and then relocated to the Western Front, France during March 1916. Pte Breen was appointed a Lance Corporal in September 1916 and promoted to Corporal (Cpl) in February 1917. He was wounded in action on 3 March 1917 for which he was repatriated to England for treatment and recuperation before rejoining his battalion in France on 9 May 1917. Cpl Breen was promoted to Lance Sergeant on 14 May 1917 and then to Sergeant (Sgt) on 12 June 197. He was awarded the Military Medal (MM) for his actions at Westhoek on the night of 21 September 1917. Sgt Breen was posted to the Cadet Training Battalion in Oxford, England, on 2 November 1917. On successful completion of the course, he was commissioned on 1 June 1918 with the rank of Second Lieutenant and rejoined his battalion in France on 17 June 1918. 2nd Lt Breen was killed in action near Villers Bretonneux, France, on 4 July 1918. He was aged 25 years.