Private John Leak

Service Numbers 2055, 2053
Birth Date 07 June 1892
Birth Place United Kingdom: England, Hampshire, Portsmouth
Death Date 20 October 1972
Death Place Australia: South Australia, Adelaide, Redwood Park
Also known as John Leak
Final Rank
Units
Commonwealth of Australia Gazette 14 December 1916 on page 3380 at position 2
London Gazette 9 September 1916 on page 8871 at position 1

English-born John Leak (1892-1972) came to Australia as a boy and in January 1915 enlisted in the AIF. He served on Gallipoli and next year accompanied his unit to France, in time to be thrown into the bloody fighting at Pozieres. In a battle notorious for its scale and intensity, Leak's solo attack with bombs and bayonet on a German post stood out. In a further action on 21 August he was wounded.

Few came out of Pozieres without physical or mental scars and this brave soldier was no exception, yet he served on only to be severely gassed in March 1918. After a few jobs, Leak became a garage proprietor in Western Australia, before retiring to South Australia, where he died.

Collection items

Rolls

  • First World War Embarkation Roll

    Rank
    Private
    Place of Embarkation
    Brisbane
    Embarkation Ship
    HMAT Kyarra A55
    Date of Embarkation
    16 April 1915
    Conflict
    First World War, 1914-1918

Honours & Awards

  • Honours and Awards:

    Award/Honour
    Victoria Cross
    Classification
    British/Australian gallantry awards
    Unit
    9th Australian Infantry Battalion
    Conflict
    First World War, 1914-1918
    Rank
    Private
    London Gazette
    9 September 1916 on page 8871 at position 1
    Commonwealth Gazette
    14 December 1916 on page 3380 at position 2
  • Honours and Awards (Recommendation):

    Award/Honour
    Victoria Cross
    Classification
    British/Australian gallantry awards
    Date of Recommendation
    31 July 1916
    Unit
    9th Australian Infantry Battalion
    Conflict
    First World War, 1914-1918
    Rank
    Private

Timeline

Date of birth 1892
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 28 January 1915 9 Battalion
Date of embarkation 16 April 1915
Date wounded 21 August 1915 Wounded at Mouquet Farm.
Date of honour or award 23 July 1916 Awarded Victoria Cross for action at Pozieres, France whilst serving with 9 Battalion, 3 Brigade, 1 Division as a Private
Date of recommendation honour or award 31 July 1916
Date wounded 07 March 1918 Gassed.
Date of discharge 31 May 1919
Date of death 20 October 1972