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The story below was written by E. S. Ellison, (Bill Allison) the writer of two books; Kiwi at Large, and Kiwi Vagabond. Errol served in WWII alongside V.C and bar winner Charles Upham
Dedication below to Lt Ralph. D. Doughty.
Thank you so very much for giving me the opportunity to read these truly wonderful diary's written by your great, great uncle Lieutenant R. D. Doughty M.C.
It is truly a most unique and most interesting set of diaries, and is well worthy of publication. The writer doesn't set out to glorify himself or war. He writes in such a straight forward style as though he's writing a letter to family or close friends.
The very writing material on which the young Lieutenant writer uses is unusual the leather horse harness. It also seems a though he wanted the horses to take a part in the diaries, for he began his military life with the horses, but he also took a keen and active interest in all aspects of a gunner's life and it seems his officers soon recognised his worth and his courage for he soon was made a 1st Lieutenant. He certainly earned his rank and his Military Cross.
His diary notes are certainly the most interesting I've read they give such a vivid account of real life and death on Gallipoli and in Flanders fields. He doesn't set out to impress, and yet no other diary note's I've read are as true and vivid as his.
And I learned from his diary much more than from many of the other histories I've read until I read his diaries I was not aware that so many aircraft (on both sides) were used, and so many submarines. Nor did I realise that so many other nationalities were involved apart from the British and the ANZACS, the Turks, and of course the Germans I was surprised to read that Greek troops (some thousands) were also involved, and the French, and French-Africa troops.
Then of course from the hell of Gallipoli he went on to serve in the harrowing mud of Ypees then to his death in the shambles of Passchendaele. He had a very, very long and hard war. His M.C. was well earned.
I should think he meant to send his diary notes home, for he probably would not have had much time to write letters.
And thank you for giving me the opportunity to read these truly unique diaries
Bill Allison
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