A little about: Frank Partridge VC


Private Frank John PARTRIDGE
8th Australian Infantry Battalion AIF
24th July 1945, Bonis Peninsula, at Bougainville


On 24th July 1945 two fighting patrols, 8th Australian Infantry Battalion, were given the task of eliminating an enemy outpost in Bougainville, which denied any forward movement by our troops. Private Partridge was a rifleman in a section, which came under heavy medium machine-gun fire. He was hit twice in the left arm and again in the left thigh, while the Bren gunner was killed and two others seriously injured.

Private Partridge quickly appreciated the extreme gravity of the situation and decided that the only possible solution was personal action. Despite wounds and with complete disregard for his own safety, Private Partridge rushed forward under a terrific burst of enemy fire and retrieved the Bren gun from alongside the dead gunner. He handed the Bren gun to another man to provide covering fire while he rushed the bunker, into which he threw a grenade and silenced the medium machine gun. Under cover of the grenade burst, he dived into the bunker and in a fierce hand-to-hand fight; he killed the only living occupant with his knife. Private Partridge then attacked another bunker, but weakness from loss of blood, compelled him to halt, when he was unable to continue.
With the way clear by the silencing of the enemy machine-gun, the Platoon moved forward and established a defensive perimeter. However heavy enemy medium machine-gun and rifle fire soon created an untenable situation for the Platoon, which withdrew. Despite his wounds Private Partridge remained in action until the Platoon had withdrawn after recovering their casualties. The information gained during these actions enabled another, this time successful attack to be mounted.
The serious situation during the fight of the two patrols was retrieved only by the outstanding gallantry and devotion to duty displayed by Private Partridge, which inspired his comrades to heroic action. "The subsequent successful capture of the position was due entirely to the incentive derived by his comrades from the outstanding heroism and fortitude displayed by Private Partridge."
[London Gazette: 22nd January 1946]


Frank PARTRIDGE was born on 29 November 1924 at Grafton, New South Wales. He was killed in a motor accident on 23rd March 1964 and is buried at Macksville, New South Wales.