• Christina Drummond

Sub Lieutenant Oscar Freyberg, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, Collingwood Battalion, Royal Naval Div


Remembering the Fallen: on this day in 1915, Sub Lieutenant Oscar Freyberg, Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve, Collingwood Battalion, Royal Naval Division, was killed in action at Gallipoli, during the Third Battle of Kirthia.

He and three of his four brothers served during the Great War. Lieutenant General Bernard Cyril Freyberg, 1st Baron Freyberg, VC, GCMG, KCB, KBE, DSO & Three Bars, (Royal Naval Reserve at the outbreak of the Great War) and Gunner Cuthbert Freyberg, New Zealand Field Artillery, both survived the war and went on to serve in the second world war. Paul Milton Freyberg (rank unclear) served with the New Zealand Rifle Brigade and was killed at Ypres in 1917. Sub Lieutenant Freyberg was also related to Lieutenant Commander Lancelot Freyberg R.N. who was lost when HMS Russell went down in 1916.

Sub Lieutenant Freyberg saw action in the South African War, during which he was awarded the Queen’s Medal with Five Clasps. He had been born in London but was living in New Zealand at the outbreak of the Great War, at which time he returned immediately to take up a temporary commission with the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve. He was appointed to the Collingwood and set sail for the Dardanelles. It was while he was leading his men into action during the Third Battle of Kirthia at Gallipoli that he was shot and killed. His name is on the Helles Memorial, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission war memorial near Sedd el Bahr in Turkey – it is located on the headland at the tip of the Gallipoli peninsula overlooking the Dardanelles.

Oscar, born in Kensington but resident in Wellington, New Zealand, was 34 years old.

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