Corporal Arthur Percy Sullivan VC

Arthur Percy Sullivan. A02497 Arthur Percy Sullivan

Date of birth: 27 November 1896
Place of birth: Prospect, Adelaide, SA
Date of death: Birdcage Walk near Wellington Barracks, London, England
Place of death: 9 April 1937

Arthur Sullivan, born at Prospect, Adelaide, was a bank officer when he enlisted in April 1918. Too late for active service in France, and determined to see action, he volunteered for the British North Russia Relief Force.

On 10 August 1919, in action against the Bolsheviks, Sullivan's unit was cut off. While fighting their way out, an officer and three men fell into a deep swamp. Without hesitation and under heavy fire, Sullivan jumped in and rescued all four. His citation described the action as "a splendid example of heroism, as all ranks were on the point of exhaustion and the enemy less than 100 yards distant".

Known as "the shy VC", Sullivan died in 1937 as a result of a fall he sustained in London while a member of the Australian contingent attending the coronation of King George VI. A plaque has been placed on the railing at Wellington Barracks, near the site of his fatal accident.

Sullivan received the Victoria Cross, service medals for the First World War and the King George VI Coronation Medal.

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