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

ID number P05150.001
Collection Photograph
Object type Black & white - Print silver gelatin
Maker Unknown (Photographer)
Place made North Africa: Western Desert, Libya
Date made 12 April 1941


Studio portrait of NX15705 Corporal (Cpl) John Hurst (Jack) Edmondson VC, 2/17th Battalion. Edmondson enlisted on 20 May 1940 at Paddington, NSW, and with prior militia service with the 4th Battalion, he was quickly promoted to Corporal and embarked for the Middle East on 19 October 1940. He served with the 9th Division at Tobruk and for his actions on 13 and 14 April 1941, which ultimately took his life, he was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross. The citation in the London Gazette on 1 July 1941 reads: "On the night of 13th-14th April, 1941, a party of German infantry broke through the wire defences of Tobruk, and established themselves with numerous machine guns, mortars and field pieces. Led by an officer, Corporal Edmondson and five privates carried out a bayonet charge upon them under heavy fire. Although wounded in the neck and stomach Corporal Edmondson not only killed one of the enemy, but went to the assistance of his officer, who was attacked by a German from behind while bayoneting another who had seized him about the legs. Despite his wounds, from which he later died, Corporal Edmondson succeeded in killing these two Germans also, thus undoubtedly saving his officer's life. Throughout the operation he showed outstanding resolution and leadership, and conspicuous bravery." Cpl Edmondson died from his wounds on the following day, 14 April 1941, aged 26 and is buried in the Tobruk War Cemetery.