Continued from last fortnight's column.
Lieutenant Oscar Roy HOWIEMC, 3rd Tunnelling Coy
'Collie Boy', Oscar Roy HOWIE, from Steere Street, Collie, enlisted into the Mining Corps in 1915.
Howie, a mining engineer, was employed as a colliery undermanager in the Collie coalfields.
His engineering expertise saw him enlisted as a direct entry officer with the rank of Lieutenant.
Lieutenant Howie was awarded a Military Cross (MC) for bravery during actions in France in July 1916.
The recommendation read:
" For general good work for the past six months; for courage and devotion to duty on two occasions:
(1) On night 8/7/16 when he took a small party into No Man's Land and worked for 2 1/2 hours under intermittent machine gun and rifle fire to adjust a push pipe charge required to assist an Infantry Attack; his work enabled the operation to be successfully carried out.
(2) On 19/7/16 when leads and fuse to a charge for making communication trench were cut by shell fire, he, accompanied by 2 N.C.O's again successfully repaired the damage, working under very heavy fire; the charge was later successfully exploded."
In total, there were 21 miners from Colliewho served in the Mining Corps during WW1, sadly two 'Collie Boys' died whilst on active service (see asterisks beside their names below).
Australian Mining Corps
'Collie Boys' who served in the Tunnelling Companies of the Australian Mining Corps are listed below:
6796 Alexander ANDERSON
913 Thomas Richard ATHERTON
917 Robinson BARNES
488 David Rowland BEDLINGTON
5285 Ambrose Henry BRAY
9535 Henry COLBRAN
4327 Peter FERGUSON
4353 Charles HENDERSON
6464 James HORROCKS
Lt Oscar Roy HOWIEMC
1044 John Arnold JONES
*6821 William KENNY
5155 John Henry McLAREN
1118 Thomas PAGE
7697 John PEMBER
*5400 James Rhys PRITCHARD
6837 Rupert Charles PRITCHARD
7165 Thomas Archibald RICHARDS
5419 Thomas Greer SHANNON
1166 Samson SIMPSON
'Collie Boys' of the 3rd Tunnelling Company (pictured above)
Back row L to R: Bob Watson (not known - Collie); 1186 Evan Thompson Snr; 243 Robinson Barnes; 1166 Samson Simpson; 913 Thomas Atherton.
Front row L to R: 488 David Bedlington; Lt Oscar Roy Howie MC; unknown soldier.