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Anderson, Charles Groves Wright

Date of birth:
February 12th, 1897 (Capetown/Newlands, South- Africa)
Date of death:
November 11th, 1988 (Redhill, Canberra, Australia)
Service number:
Australian (1901-present, Federal Monarchy)


Charles Anderson enlisted on 1st June 1940 in Paddington, New-South-Wales. He was discharged on 20th December 1945 with the highest reached rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

Charles Groves Wright Anderson's grave, Norwood Crematorium, Canberra, Australia.

1914: Private;
1915: Gunner;
October 13th, 1916: Lieutenant;
1932: Captain;
October 26th, 1939: temporary Major;
July 25th, 1940: Major;
August 1st, 1941: acting Lieutenant Colonel;
November 14th, 1941: Lieutenant Colonel (as from August 1st, 1941).

1914: Kenya Defence Force;
1914 - 1918: 2/3rd King's African Rifles Regiment;
1915: Calcutta Volunteer Battalion;
February 1919: demobilized;
1932: Kenya Defence Force;
1934: Emigration Australia;
1939: Citizen Military Forces;
March 3rd, 1939: 56th Battalion, Riverina Regiment, Australian Military Forces;
October 1st, 1939 - October 14th, 1939: Company commander course, Command and Staff School, Sydney;
June 1st, 1940: 2nd Australian Imperial Force;
July 5th, 1940: 2/19th Battalion, Australian Imperial Force;
August 1st, 1941 - February 15th, 1942: Commanding Officer 2/19th Battalion;
January 7th, 1942: temporary inactive for medical reasons;
February 15th, 1942: POW, Malaysia, later escaped;
May 14th, 1942: A Force, Guerrilla;
May 27th, 1942: Birma;
August 20th, 1945: safe in Allied territory;
December 21st, 1945: Reserve of Officers;
1949 - 1951: House of Representatives;
1955 - 1961: House of Representatives.

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First World War (1914-1918)
2/3rd King's African Rifles Regiment
Awarded on:
February 7th, 1919
For his part in the campaign against the German led Askari, in East Africa.
Military Cross (MC)
Second World War (1939-1945)
Lieutenant Colonel
2/19th Infantry Battalion, Australian Army
Awarded on:
February 13th, 1942
"During the operations in Malaya from the 18th to 22nd January, 1942, Lieutenant-Colonel Anderson, in command of a small Force, was sent to restore a vital position and to assist a Brigade. His Force destroyed ten enemy tanks. When later cut off, he defeated persistent attacks on his position from air and ground forces, and forced his way through the enemy lines to a depth of fifteen miles. He was again surrounded and subjected to very heavy and frequent attacks resulting in severe casualties to his Force. He personally led an attack with great gallantry on the enemy who were holding a bridge, and succeeded in destroying four guns. Lieutenant-Colonel Anderson, throughout all this fighting, protected his wounded and refused to leave them. He obtained news by wireless of the enemy position and attempted to fight his way back through eight miles of enemy occupied country. This proved to be impossible and the enemy were holding too strong a position for any attempt to be made to relieve him. On the igth January Lieutenant-Colonel Anderson was ordered to destroy his equipment and make his way back as best he could round the enemy position. Throughout the fighting, which lasted for four days, he set a magnificent example of brave leadership, determination and outstanding courage. He not only showed fighting qualities of a very high order but throughout exposed himself to danger without any regard to his own personal safety."

The award was presented on 8th January 1947 in Sydney.
Lieutenant Colonel Andersonís Victoria Cross is publicly displayed at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, Australia.
Victoria Cross (VC)