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Symons, William John (1889–1948)

William Symons, n.d., cigarette card printed by Sniders and Abrahams

William Symons, n.d., cigarette card printed by Sniders and Abrahams

Australian War Memorial, RC09123

Lieut-Colonel William John Symons, VC—one of those First AIF men who won the Victoria Cross on Gallipoli—has died in England after a long illness. Surviving members of the old 7th Battalion will recall how, at Lone Pine in August, 1915, Major-General ("Pompey") Elliott handed Symons, then a lieutenant, his own revolver and sent him to recapture a trench that the Turks had taken—and how, with great gallantry, Symons did so. Before enlisting Symons was a commercial traveller, living in Brunswick, but he was born at Eaglehawk in 1889. When the war ended in 1918 he married in England, and continued to live there. Then the Second World War broke out, and in 1941 he was promoted lieutenant-colonel, and given command of a Home Guard battalion—a post he occupied for four years.

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'Symons, William John (1889–1948)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/symons-william-john-8736/text24823, accessed 21 November 2017.

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