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Lieutenant Rupert Vance Moon V.C.Print Page Print this page

17-May-2017 (Tim Fitzgerald)
17-May-2017 (Tim Fitzgerald)

Photographs supplied by Nancy Alford / Tim Fitzgerald

A garden commemorates Lieutenant Rupert Moon who was a recipient of the Victoria Cross (V.C.) during World War One.

Rupert Theo Vance "Mick" Moon (14 August 1892 – 28 February 1986) was an Australian recipient  of the Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

He was 24 years old, and a lieutenant in the 58th Battalion (Victoria), Australian Imperial Force during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the V.C.

On 12 May 1917 near Bullecourt, France, Lieutenant Moon's immediate objective was a position in advance of a hostile trench, and then against the trench itself, after the capture of which it was intended that his men should co-operate in a further assault. Although wounded in the initial advance, he reached the first objective, but was again wounded in the assault on the trench. He nevertheless continued to inspire and encourage his men and captured the trench, but was again wounded when consolidating the position. It was not until he was severely wounded for a fourth time that he agreed to retire from the fight.

He later achieved the rank of captain.

Location

Address:Williams Road, Cemetery, Mount Duneed, 3216
State:VIC
Area:AUS
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -38.242357
Long: 144.319511
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Details

Monument Type:Garden
Monument Theme:People
Sub-Theme:Military
Actual Event STart Date:04-August-1914
Actual Event End Date:28-June-1919
Link: http://adbonline.anu.edu.au/adbonl…

Dedication

Actual Monument Dedication Date:Monday 12th May, 2008
Front Inscription

Lieutenant Rupert Vance Moon V.C. Memorial Garden

Plaque :

Lieutenant Rupert Vance Moon V.C.

 

 

Left Side Inscription

Lieutenant Rupert Vance Moon V.C.  58th Battalion AIF
Awarded the Victoria Cross on 12 May 1917 near Bullecourt, France

R. V. Moon enlisted in the AIF in august 1914 and joined the 4th Light Horse Regiment.  He joined the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force in Egypt in 1915.  He served with the 4th as a trooper at Gallipoli, and was appointed lance corporal in November 1915.

After the Gallipoli campaign, he joined the British Expeditionary Force as a sergeant in June 1916.  On September 9 1916 he was commissioned second lieutenant and posted to the 58th Battalion, he was promoted to lieutenant on April 6 1017.  On may 12 1917 the 58th was supporting the British 7th Division in an attack near Bullecourt. 

The attack commenced on time and Moon`s platoon was given the task of "taking out" a concrete machine-gun shelter which lay between the opposing trenches.  Moon, wounded early in the attack, successfully led his men in the capture of the shelter.  He then rallied them for an attack on the enemy trench and, although wounded a second time, organised a Lewis gun team to bring effective fire to bear on the Germans, causing them to flee.  He followed, but was forced back, so organised for grenades to be thrown at the enemy who were sheltering in a cutting.  With his platoon he attacked the position again and forced the Germans into dug-outs where they were effectively trapped.  Moon was wounded for the third time (in the leg and foot) in the fight for this cutting.

As the reinforcements came through to mop out, Moon and two fellow officers decided to withdraw their men a short distance and consolidate to escape the persistent sniper fire.  Just before the move was carried out, Moon, who was peering over the cutting to ascertain enemy locations, was shot in the jaw.  He insisted, however, on seeing the new position occupied before he allowed two men to take him to the rear.  For his conspicuous bravery he was awarded the Victoria Cross.

After recovering from his wounds Moon was invested with his Victoria Cross by King George V at Buckingham Palace on August 3 1917 and in March 1918 her returned to Australia for two months.  In May 1918 he returned to France and, on February 5 1919, was promoted to temporary captain.  He returned to Australia in June 1919 where his AIF appointment was terminated on October 4 1919

He died in 1986 at the age of 93 and is buried in this cemetery.

Right Side Inscription

Citiation : For the most conspicuous bravery during an attack on an enemy strong point.  His own immediate objective was a position in advance of the hostile trench, and thence against the hostile trench itself, after the capture of which it was intended his men should co-operate in a further assault on a strong point further in rear

Although wounded in the initial advance, he reached his first objective.  Leading his men again the trench itself, he was badly wounded and incapacitated for the moment.  He nevertheless inspired and encouraged his men and captured the trench.  Lieutenant Moon continued to lead his much diminished command in the general attack with the utmost valour, being again badly wounded, and the attack was sucessfully pressed home

During the consolidation of the position, this officer was again badly wounded, and it was only after this fourth and severe wound through the face that he consented to retire from the fight.  His bravery was magnificent, and was largely instrumental in the successful issue against superior numbers, the safeguarding of the flank of the attack and the capture of many prisoners and machine-guns

(London Gazette : 14th June 1917)

Source: MA, ADB
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