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    Arnold Brown, DSO, OBE, MC (1894 – 1960)

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Arnold Browns Medals

28 Bn Colour Patch1894. Born on 22nd July at Hunters Hill, Sydney, Arnold Brown was the son of James Brown and his wife, Clara Brown (née Marshall).

1915. While in Western Australia and intending to buy land, Arnold enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in March 1915 and was posted to the 28th Infantry Battalion. He was promoted to Sergeant in May.

The battalion left Australia the following month and moving via Egypt and the Greek island of Lemnos it landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula, Turkey in September. The battalion then carried out defensive operations until the general evacuation of Gallipoli until its evacuation in December.

1916. Back in Egypt, Arnold was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant and embarked with the 28th Battalion in March for movement to France and by June had been promoted to Lieutenant. He took part in the Battle of Pozières in July – September in the Somme Department. He was awarded the Military Cross for showing great initiative as the Battalion Bomb Officer in patrolling, raids and attacks, and in consolidating the trench line during the battle.

Arnold was wounded leading a bayonet charge at Flers in the Somme Department on 16th November and was evacuated to England for treatment.

1917. Returning to the 28th Battalion in January, Arnold was promoted to Temporary Major in April. For his organisation and conduct of bombing raids during the 2nd Battle of Bullecourt in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais Region, France on 3rd – 4th May, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Order.

Arnold Brown’s rank of Major was confirmed in August and on 28th September he was again wounded, this time when a German aircraft dropped a bomb on the battalion camp at Reninghelst, West Flanders, Belgium. He was again evacuated to England for treatment.

1918. By February, Arnold was back with the 28th Battalion in the Somme Department, northern France. He temporarily commanded the battalion on occasions and participated in turning back the 1918 German Spring Offensive and in the Allied Counter-Offensive that led to the Armistice 11th November.

Inter-war years.

In 1920 Arnold Brown married Freda Mary Thompson in Sydney and took up farming near Coonabarabran, New South Wales the same year. He became active in the Returned Sailors' and Soldiers' Imperial League of Australia, becoming Vice-President of the local sub-Branch in the early 1930s. He was also a Zone Commander in the New Guard, a conservative paramilitary facist movement active in New South Wales in the early 1930s.

In 1935 he became a partner in a stock and station agency and in 1938 was a foundation member of the National Defence League of Australia.

Arnold Brown in Darwin1939-1940. Between October 1939 and May 1940 Arnold Brown served full-time in the 2nd Garrison Battalion of the Citizen Military Forces before being seconded to the Australian Imperial Force in May 1940 with posting to the 2/1st Pioneer Battalion. He embarked with the battalion in September 1940 at Sydney for movement to the Middle East.

1941. Arnold was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in March when he assumed command of the 2/1st Pioneer Battalion and was mentioned in despatches in December.

1942. In March, he was repatriated to Australia and in April was appointed as an Officer in the Order of the British Empire for outstanding command of the 2/1st Pioneer Battalion when it was operating as infantry in the defence of Tobruk, Libya April/September 1941. Between May and September Arnold commanded the 36th Infantry Battalion on garrison duties at Port Moresby, Papua then resumed command of the 2/1st Pioneer Battalion.

In late 1942 Arnold became ill and spent almost five months in hospital.

1943-1945. Arnold Brown relinquished command of the 2/1st Pioneer Battalion in June 1943 and for the remainder of the Second World War variously held personnel and logistics positions. Post-Second World War

Between August and November 1945 Arnold was Commanding Officer of the 6th Australian Prisoner of War Reception Centre, Singapore established for the repatriation of Australians who had been held by Japanese forces.

Between February and July 1946 he was a member of a War Crimes Tribunal and transferred to the Reserve of Officers in August that year.

After leaving the Army, Arnold took up farming near Windsor, New South Wales and in 1949 became Director of the nearby Immigration Holding Centre, Scheyville.

1960. Arnold Brown passed away on 6th March aged 65 at Batemans Bay, New South Wales. He was survived by his wife, two daughters and one of two sons.

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