Another from the extraordinary collection of Long Range Desert Group items I have been able to offer is this collection of personal items formerly belonging to Trooper Leslie Athol (aka Bill) Willcox, service number 1290 of 2 Divisional Cavalry Regiment New Zealand Forces – The Long range Desert Group.
Trooper Willcox was be awarded the Military Medal for the action fought at Ain Dua and was Gazetted on 31st January 1941: “Two of the Div Cav men in the unit had been decorated: Lieutenant J. H. Sutherland, MC, and Trooper L. A. Willcox, MM. These men earned the first decorations in the 2nd NZ Expeditionary Force”
The collection comprises:
His LRDG Cap Badge, described by him in one of his letters as “an early Badge”, in very good condition but with both fixing posts bent over
A silver LRDG Tie Pin in very good condition.
His General Service Pocket Watch with his name on the reverse with a note saying he carried this on all the patrols, and it only stopped working on the boat on the way home! Not in working order.
A German Hunting Knife in good condition with a note saying he took this from a German officer who didn’t want to give it up as his father had carried throughout WW1.
A Newspaper cutting dated January 15th 1941 showing him and Lt. after having been decorated.
20 Original and extremely rare 95mm x 65mm all taken in the desert during patrols with the LRDG and all annotated on the back “ Under camo is a Chev 30cwt truck 1,000 miles behind enemy lines on a road watch”, “Convoy set on fire by us”, “Cleopataras (sic) Pool in Sika, first bath for six weeks”, “Patrol under camouflage” etc.
One 140mm x 91mm original photograph, the back annotated “Ain Dua, where we were decorated”
A Postcard of a L.R.D.G. Chevrolet Truck.
A page from the Wanganui Chronicle dated April 5, 1986 with an interview with Bill Willcox, and two other newspaper cuttings along with a number of letters and cards from him but also from his widow to an L.R.D.G collector.
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