Topic: Richard Stevens

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Richard Stevens (Service no. 6/1989) was a First World War soldier with links to Sumner

Richard John Nicholas Stevens was born on 14 December 1877. He was the 7th child of Captain James Finch Stevens and Maria Ann (nee Webb) Stevens, of Sydenham, Christchurch.  He was the brother of James (b. 1864), Maria Ann (b. 1865), William Henry (b. 1867), Elizabeth Margaret (b. 1870), Margaret Cecilia (b. 1873), Ann Mary Charlotte (b. 1876), Mary Margaret Gough (b. 1879), John (b. 1881), Henry John Manning (b. 1882), Herbert John Webb (b. 1883) and George Clarence (b. 1885). Richard's father died on the wreck of the ‘Lizzie Guy’ in 1888.

Richard was a single 35 year old Anglican man, 5’ 11 ¼ “ tall with a dark complexion, brown hair and grey eyes. He also had a tattoo on his left forearm.  At the time of his enlistment on the 7 January 1915 he was living with his mother at ‘Beach Glen’, 2 Colenso Street, Sumner, and working as a quarryman for Sumner Quarries, Christchurch.

On enlistment Richard was assigned to the rank of Private in the Canterbury Infantry Battalion. After training at Trentham the Battalion departed Wellington on 17April with HMNZT 21 Willochra, or HMNZT 22 Knight Templar, or HMNZT 23 Waitomo, and arrived in Egypt on 25May. On 31 July the Battalion was shipped to the Dardanelles.

On 8 August 1915 Richard was wounded during the Battle for Chunuk Bair.  He was transferred via the Hospital Ship HS Dongola to the No.15 General Hospital, Alexandria on 14 August.  He became dangerously ill on the 17 August and died of his wounds on the 12 September 1915. He was buried the same day in the Alexandria (Hadra) War Memorial Cemetery, Grave no. 1577.

Private Richard Stevens was posthumously awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal which were delivered to his mother in October 1921.

Richard is remembered on the Sumner war memorial plaque.


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Richard Stevens

First Names:Richard John Nicholas
Last Name:Stevens
Place of Birth:Christchurch, New Zealand