Biography

Birth date: 28 March 1918
Birth place: Australia: New South Wales, Barmedman
Death date: 10 January 1986
Death place: Australia: New South Wales, West Wyalong
Final rank: Corporal
Service number: NX102964 - Second World War, 1939-1945
Unit: 25th Australian Infantry Battalion

Reg Rattey (1918-1986) spent most of his life in the Wyalong district of New South Wales. He was in the local militia light horse troop when the war began, and in 1942 he volunteered for the Second AIF. After serving in a carrier company in New Guinea, he transferred to the 25th Battalion, another militia unit, and landed on Bougainville in late 1944.

During an advance, when held up by Japanese machine-gun posts, Rattey attacked them using grenades and firing his Bren gun from the hip. "His bravery was an incentive to the entire company."

In 1946 Rattey went to London with the Australian Victory Contingent and, while there, he was invested with his decoration by King George VI at Buckingham Palace. He later settled down at West Wyalong, where he died.

Rolls and Awards

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Victoria Cross

  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Honours and Awards : Victoria Cross

  • Unit: 25th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Collection Items

Photograph

018941

Sydney, NSW. August 1945. Portrait of Sergeant Reginald Roy Rattey, an Australian VC winner, who was mobbed when he appeared at an Australian Comfort's Fund rally in Martin Place.

018941

044647

TOBRUK, LIBYA, 1953. GROUP PORTRAIT OF FIVE VICTORIA CROSS WINNERS, MEMBERS OF THE AUSTRALIAN AND NEW ZEALAND CORONATION CONTINGENT IN FRONT OF CORPORAL JACK EDMONDSON'S GRAVE IN THE TOBRUK WAR CEMETERY. THEY ARE FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: PRIVATE (PTE) FRANK JOHN PARTRIDGE, PTE E. KENNA, SERGEANT (SGT)...

044647

044649

TOBRUK, LIBYA, 1953-04-25. A GUARD OF HONOUR OF MEMBERS OF THE AUSTRALIAN AND NEW ZEALAND CORONATION CONTINGENT TAKING PART IN THE ANZAC DAY CEREMONY AT THE TOBRUK WAR CEMETERY. (LENT BY R. RATTEY).

044649

044652

Three members of the Australian Army who were awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery in the Pacific Theatre and who were in Australia's Victory Contingent to Britain after the war. From the left they are Privates Frank John Partridge, Richard Kelliher and Sergeant Reginald Rattey.

044652

044653

Three members of the Australian Army who were awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery in the Pacific Theatre. From the left they are Sergeant Reginald Rattey, Privates Frank John Partridge and Richard Kelliher. (Donor R. Rattey)

044653

044654

TWO VICTORIA CROSS WINNERS; FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: PTE R. KELLIHER, VC AND SGT R.R. RATTEY, VC.(LENT BY R.R. RATTEY).

044654

030414

Colombo, Ceylon. 1953. NX376 Brigadier D. A. Whitehead, CBE, DSO, MC, ED, Commanding Officer, Australia and New Zealand Coronation Contingent, photographed in his cabin aboard the aircraft carrier HMAS Sydney with five Victoria Cross winners in WW2. They are: Sergeant R. R. Rattey, VC (1); Private...

030414

030424

Tobruk, Libya. 25 April 1953. Group portrait of five Victoria Cross winners, members of the Australian and New Zealand Coronation Contingent, in the Tobruk War Cemetery, during their brief stay while on their way to England to attend the coronation of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. They are, left...

030424

112366

SYDNEY, NSW. 1945-08-03. ADMIRAL SIR BRUCE A. FRAZER, ROYAL NAVY, COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, BRITISH PACIFIC FLEET (2) GREETING SERGEANT R. RATTEY, VC (1) ON HIS ARRIVAL AT MARTIN PLACE TO ADDRESS MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC IN AN APPEAL FOR FUNDS FOR THE AUSTRALIAN COMFORTS FUND. IDENTIFIED:- MAJOR-GENERAL E....

112366

112368

SYDNEY, NSW. 1945-08-03. SERGEANT R. RATTEY, VC (4) AFTER LAUNCHING AN APPEAL FOR FUNDS FOR THE AUSTRALIAN COMFORTS FUND, STANDS TO ATTENTION TO ACKNOWLEDGE THREE CHEERS CALLED FOR FROM THE CROWD BY ALDERMAN SIR WILLIAM NEVILLE HARDING, LORD MAYOR OF SYDNEY (5). IDENTIFIED:- COLONEL F. W. MARSHALL,...

112368

112369

SYDNEY, NSW. 1945-08-03. SERGEANT R. RATTEY, VC (3) CHATTING WITH COLONEL F. W. MARSHALL, UNITED STATES ARMY (4) DURING AN APPEAL FOR FUNDS FOR THE AUSTRALIAN COMFORTS FUND IN MARTIN PLACE. IDENTIFIED PERSONNEL ARE:- ADMIRAL SIR BRUCE A. FRAZER, ROYAL NAVY, COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, BRITISH PACIFIC FLEET...

112369

112872

The Lord Mayor of Sydney, Alderman W N Harding, (left), and the Lord Mayor of Melbourne, Alderman Sir Thomas S Nettleford (right), entertaining Victoria Cross recipient Sergeant R Rattey (centre) at an official reception at the Sydney Town Hall.

112872

112873

The Lord Mayor of Sydney, Alderman W N Harding, (left), and the Lord Mayor of Melbourne, Alderman Sir Thomas S Nettleford (right), talking with Victoria Cross recipient Sergeant R Rattey (centre) at an official reception at the Sydney Town Hall.

112873

122386

SYDNEY, NSW 1945-10-31. THE NSW LINES OF COMMUNICATION AREA AMF DISCHARGE DEPOT, ROYAL AGRICULTURAL SHOWGROUNDS. NX102964 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC (CENTRE), 25TH BATTALION, HANDS IN WAR EQUIPMENT TO NX144658 BOMBARDIER M. T. BOURKE IN THE DE KITTING STORE. (PHOTOGRAPHER L. CPL E. MCQUILLAN)

122386

122387

SYDNEY, NSW 1945-10-31. THE NSW LINES OF COMMUNICATION AREA AMF DISCHARGE DEPOT, ROYAL AGRICULTURAL SHOWGROUNDS. NX102964 SERGEANT (SGT) R. R. RATTEY VC (CENTRE), 25TH BATTALION, SIGNS HIS DISCHARGE CERTIFICATE IN THE DE KITTING STORE. LEFT TO RIGHT: N53695 SGT A. O. HOWE; N226411 SGT L. M....

122387

122388

SYDNEY, NSW 1945-10-31. THE NSW LINES OF COMMUNICATION AREA AMF DISCHARGE DEPOT, ROYAL AGRICULTURAL SHOWGROUNDS. NX102964 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC (CENTRE), 25TH BATTALION, RECEIVES HIS DISCHARGE CERTIFICATE FROM N53695 SGT A. O. HOWE IN THE DEPOT DE KITTING STORE. (PHOTOGRAPHER L. CPL E. MCQUILLAN)

122388

122389

SYDNEY, NSW 1945-10-31. THE NSW LINES OF COMMUNICATION AREA AMF DISCHARGE DEPOT, ROYAL AGRICULTURAL SHOWGROUNDS. NX102964 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC (CENTRE), 25TH BATTALION, HAVING COMPLETED ALL FORMALITIES HAS HIS PAPERS CHECKED BY WX29211 CAPTAIN E. C. PARKER, CONVENING OFFICER. (PHOTOGRAPHER L....

122389

126834

WATSONIA, VIC. 1946-04-18. NX208102 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC, OF BARMEDMAN, NSW, SIGNS AN AUTOGRAPH BOOK.

126834

126836

WATSONIA, VIC. 1946-04-18. THE THREE VC'S WHO WILL MARCH IN THE LONDON VICTORY MARCH, BEFORE EMBARKING ON HMAS SHROPSHIRE EN ROUTE TO ENGLAND. LEFT TO RIGHT: N454409 FRANK JOHN PARTRIDGE; NX208102 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY, QX500601 PRIVATE R. KELLIHER.

126836

126851

MELBOURNE, VIC. 1946-04-18. FRIEND OF SERGEANT R. RATTEY VC WISHING HIM FAREWELL BEFORE HE EMBARKS ON HMAS SHROPSHIRE FOR ENGLAND.

126851

134906

NX102964 SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC, "A" COMPANY, 25TH INFANTRY BATTALION. SGT RATTEY WAS AWARDED THE VICTORIA CROSS (VC) FOR EXCEPTIONAL BRAVERY AND A COMPLETE DISREGARD FOR HIS OWN LIFE WHEN HE SILENCED ENEMY FIRE FROM AUTOMATIC WEAPONS IN BUNKERS WHICH WERE DOMINATING ALL LINES OF APPROACH TO A...

134906

134906A

NX102964 SERGEANT REGINALD ROY RATTEY VC, A COMPANY, 25TH INFANTRY BATTALION. SERGEANT RATTEY WAS AWARDED THE VICTORIA CROSS FOR EXCEPTIONAL BRAVERY AND A COMPLETE DISREGARD FOR HIS OWN LIFE WHEN HE SILENCED ENEMY FIRE FROM AUTOMATIC WEAPONS IN BUNKERS. THE BUNKERS WERE DOMINATING ALL LINES OF...

134906A

131222

SYDNEY, NSW. 1946-08-28. SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC.

131222

131223

SYDNEY, NSW. 1946-08-28. SERGEANT R. R. RATTEY VC.

131223

P00099.001

PROBABLY CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA, C. 1946-06. THREE VICTORIA CROSS WINNERS, PART OF HEADQUARTERS LONDON VICTORY MARCH CONTINGENT WHO LEFT SYDNEY ON HMAS SHROPSHIRE ON 1946-04-11 FOR LONDON. LEFT TO RIGHT WITH THE RANK THEY HELD AT THE TIME THEY WON THEIR AWARDS: PRIVATE RICHARD H. KELLIHER 2/25TH...

P00099.001

P08489.001

Outdoor portrait of King George VI pausing to talk to Australian Victoria Cross winners, from left: NX700426 Frank Partridge VC; QX500601 Private Richard Kelliher VC and NX700427 Sergeant Reg Rattey VC. The men had travelled to England as members of the Australian Victory Contingent of 250 to...

P08489.001

Art

Sergeant Reginald Rattey

A portrait of Sergeant Reginald Roy Rattey VC, NX102964, A Company, 25 Battalion Australian Military Force. Corporal Rattey was an exceptional rather than a typical member of the 25th Battalion. Sergeant Rattey was awarded the Victoria Cross for his exceptional bravery and a complete disregard for...

ART27534

Bren Gunner (Sergeant Reginald Rattey) VC

A portrait of Sergeant Reginald Roy Rattey VC, NX102964, A Company, 25 Battalion Australian Military Force holding a Bren gun. Corporal Rattey was an exceptional rather than a typical member of the 25th Battalion, aged twenty seven at the time when this was painted. He was well developed and...

ART22486

Technology

Japanese Invasion Money Malaya one dollar note: Sergeant R R Rattey, 25 Battalion, Australian Army

Japanese Invasion Money one dollar note for use in Malaya, series MO. The note is uncirculated and has a small stain in the top right hand corner of the obverse.

RELC02637

Japanese Invasion Money Netherlands East Indies ten gulden note: Sergeant R R Rattey, 25 Battalion, Australian Army

Japanese Invasion Money ten gulden note for use in Netherlands East Indies, series SI. The note has been circulated and it has a central vertical fold mark.

RELC02638

Timeline

Date of birth 1918-03-28
Date of death 1986-01-10