WW1 Gunner John Edward Nicholls 2/2893

Gunner John Edward Nicholls [1]

John Edward Nicholls, known as Jack, was born 18 December 1888 to Emily Mary (nee Stead) and Henry Eddy Nicholls of 18 Armadale Rd Remuera, Auckland.

Henry Eddy Nicholls died on 16th August 1915 aged 57 years. At enlistment on 19 November 1915 Jack was a milk vendor at Wilson Line Palmerston North where his brother Thomas Henry (Harry) Nicholls was a dairyman.

He was posted to the N Z Field Artillery 10 th Reinforcements as a driver. On 22 February 1916 he sailed from Wellington on the Waihora to Suez and thence to France from Port Said arriving 14 April 1916. On 29 April 1916 he was attached to the N Z Infantry at Base Depot Etaples in France as a driver and on 13 May 1916 was posted to DAC Divisional Ammunition Column in France as a gunner.

Then Jack had the first of several admissions to hospital:

• at Calais on 19 June 1916

• No. 4 General Hospital at Wimereux on 16 November 1916

• No.1 Convalescent Depot at Boulogne, 18 November 1916

• 20th General Hospital at Dannes-Camiers on 14th November 1916

• No. 4 General Hospital at Rouen, 29 November 1916 [2]

Nicholls John Edward Purewa [2]

On 7 December 1916 he was re-attached to the Base Depot at Etaples and in February 1917 was posted to the 12th Battalion in the field. On 20 August 1917 he was admitted to 2nd N Z General Hospital at Walton-on-Thames with tachycardia, a heart rhythm disorder. He was classified as unfit by the Medical Board on 9 October 1917 and placed on the N Z Rolls. He embarked from Liverpool on the Ruahine for New Zealand on 16 November 1917 and was discharged in New Zealand on 12 February 1918. [3]

John Edward Nicholls died age 30 of influenza on 10 November 1918 at his mother’s house in Armadale Road Remuera “after discharge from wounds inflicted or disease contracted while on active service”. He was buried at Purewa Cemetery, Section 39 Block E Grave 119 and is remembered on the gates of Remuera Primary School, Dromorne Road, Remuera, Auckland. [4]

Lance Corporal Thomas Henry Nicholls [3]

His brother Thomas Henry (Harry) 29458 (1890 – 1968) became a Sergeant in the Wellington Infantry Regiment and was awarded the Military Medal in 1918 for acts of gallantry in the field.

IN MEMORIAM. NICHOLLS— In loving memory of our dear son and brother (Jack) Driver John Edward Nicholls, late 10th Reinforcements, N.Z.F.A. who passed away November 10 1918. Time cannot efface from our memories the one we loved. —Inserted by his loving mother and sisters. [5]