William Symons

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William Symons
William John Symons.jpg
Lieutenant William Symons c.1915–16
Born (1889-07-10)10 July 1889
Bendigo, Australia
Died 24 June 1948(1948-06-24) (aged 58)
Paddington, England
Allegiance Australia
Service/branch Australian Army
Home Guard
Years of service 1906–18
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
Unit 7th Battalion

First World War

Second World War
Awards Victoria Cross

William John Symons, VC (10 July 1889 – 24 June 1948) was an Australian recipient of the Victoria Cross, the highest award for gallantry in the face of the enemy that can be awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.

He was 26 years old, and a second lieutenant in the 7th Battalion, (Victoria), Australian Imperial Force during the First World War when the following deed took place for which he was awarded the VC.

On 8–9 August 1915, at Lone Pine, Gallipoli, Turkey, Symons was in command of a section of newly captured trenches and repelled several counter-attacks with great coolness. An enemy attack on an isolated sap early in the morning resulted in six officers becoming casualties and part of the sap being lost, but Symons retook it, shooting two Turks. The sap was then attacked from three sides and this officer managed, in the face of heavy fire, to build a barricade. On the enemy setting fire to the head cover, he extinguished it and rebuilt the barricade. His coolness and determination finally compelled the enemy to withdraw.[1]

He later achieved the rank of lieutenant colonel during the Second World War.

His Victoria Cross is displayed at the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, Australia.


  1. ^ "No. 29328". The London Gazette. 15 October 1915. p. 10153.  (Victoria Cross)

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