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6th Light Horse, Australian Imperial Force in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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6th Light Horse, Australian Imperial Force

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Those known to have served with

6th Light Horse, Australian Imperial Force

during the Great War 1914-1918.

  • Crozier Richard Walters. Tpr. (d.4th Aug 1916)
  • Hogue Oliver. Major
  • Varney Albany Thomas Frederick. Pte.

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Feb 2018

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Pte. Albany Thomas Frederick Varney 12th Light Horse Regiment

Albany Thomas Frederick Varney was born near Coonabarabran, New South Wales, in 1891. The 24-year-old contractor enlisted with the Australian Imperial Force on 29 March 1915 and departed Sydney with the other reinforcements for the 12th Light Horse Regiment aboard HMAT Chilka on 7 June 1915.

Soon after arriving in Egypt Varney was transferred to the 6th Light Horse Regiment in Gallipoli and served there until the evacuation in December. While on the peninsula he wrote of an amusing incident where the sauce bottle in his bag was pierced by shrapnel and leaked all over everything in the bag. He considered it another thing the Turks had to pay for.

The following February Varney was transferred back to the 12th Light Horse Regiment and travelled with it across the Sinai, Palestine, and Jordan Valley. During this time he documented his service regularly in letters and postcards home, with detailed descriptions of the conditions and places encountered. In October 1917 he participated in the battle of Beersheba and in May 1918 sustained a gunshot wound to the leg. Varney sailed for Australia in July 1919 with the remainder of the 12th Light Horse.

He later enlisted for service in the Second World War and was assigned to part-time duty with the 25th Battalion of the Volunteer Defence Corps. Albany Varney survived the war and died at Coonabarabran in 1981.

S Flynn


Major Oliver "Bluegum" Hogue 6th Light Horse Regiment

Oliver Hogue was born in Sydney on 29 April 1880. Despite growing up in the city, his ability at sports and his skill as a horseman led Hogue to consider himself a bushman and, after completing school, he travelled thousands of miles by bicycle along Australia's east coast. He worked as a commercial traveler before joining the Sydney Morning Herald in 1907 as a journalist. After the outbreak of the First World War Hogue tried unsuccessfully to become Australia's official war correspondent and instead enlisted as a trooper with the 6th Light Horse Regiment. He departed Sydney aboard HMAT Suevic on 21 December 1914.

Hogue served on Gallipoli for five months before being evacuated to England with enteric fever. He returned to his unit in the Sinai region in early 1916. Hogue developed a reputation as a loyal and enthusiastic officer unafraid of front-line service, and he was a regular writer to both his family and his former employer. Writing under the pseudonym "Trooper Bluegum", his contributions to the Sydney Morning Herald were published as books back in Australia. After participating in the battle of Romani in August 1916 he was transferred to the Imperial Camel Corps (ICC) and was involved in the battles of Magdhaba, Rafa, and Gaza in 1917. In letters home Hogue frequently referred to the fearlessness and achievements of the Australian troops, especially at Romani. He was also critical of the British press coverage of the war, which largely overlooked the accomplishments of the ICC and Australian troops in general.

July 1918 Hogue was transferred to the 14th Light Horse Regiment and participated in the advance through the Jordan Valley. He was also promoted to major at this time. After reaching Damascus, and with the Turkish surrender in October, Hogue took leave to England in January 1919. Having survived the entirety of the First World War he soon after contracted influenza and died in London on 3 March 1919.

s flynn


Tpr. Richard Walters Crozier 6th Australian Light Horse (d.4th Aug 1916)

Richard Walters Crozier was born at Numurkah, Victoria in 1892. At the outbreak of the First World War he was living and working in Culcairn, New South Wales as a farmer. Crozier enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force on 16 January 1915. He was aged 23 at the time and had no prior military experience. He departed Newcastle aboard HMAT Bakara on 22 May 1915. Crozier was assigned to the 6th Australian Light Horse and remained with this unit throughout his service. His younger brother, Private Sydney George Crozier, also served with this unit in the Middle East.

He arrived at Gallipoli on 2 October 1915. He received a minor shrapnel wound to the neck on 25 November 1915 and was sent to Malta to receive medical attention. Crozier re-joined his unit at Maadi, Egypt on 8 February 1916. Richard Crozier was killed in action on 4 August 1916 during the battle of Romani, the last Ottoman offensive against the Suez Canal, and is buried at Kantara War Memorial Cemetery, Egypt.

s flynn

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