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Private Benjamin Gower Hardy
George Cross

Benjamin Gower Hardy was born August 28, 1898 to parents Benjamin Gower Hardy and Emily Hardy, of Willoughby, New South Wales to the north of Sydney. On September 25, 1941 he joined the Australian Army with service number N103951 and was assigned to the 22nd Garrison Battalion and assigned as a guard at Cowra POW Camp.

Click For EnlargementWartime History
On August 5, 1944 he manned the No. 2 Vickers machine gun position with Private Ralph Jones who fired for five minues at rioting Japanese Prisoners Of War (POWs) but were overrun and clubbed to both men to death. Afterwards, both earned the George Cross for helping to "quelling Japanese uprising".

Jones was officially declared dead August 5, 1944. He is buried at Cowra War Cemetery at Row D. Grave 11.

George CrossGeorge Cross Citation
"Private Benjamin Gower Hardy was on duty with another soldier as the crew of a Vickers machine gun at the No. 12 Prisoner of War Camp, Cowra, guarding the compound in which were interned over 1000 Japanese prisoners of war. On the night of 4th-5th August, 1944, the prisoners staged a mass outbreak, stormed over the perimeter, and bore down on the machine gun crew. Private Hardy and his companion stood their ground and continued to work the gun until they were killed, displaying outstanding gallantry and devotion to duty against an overwhelming onslaught. Private Hardy met his death in the true British spirit of sacrifice for his country." (London Gazette - September 1, 1950)

WW2 Nominal Roll - Benjamin Gower Hardy
CWGC - Benjamin Gower Hardy

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