Corporal John French VC Memorial Bridge
Concrete bridge over Downfall Creek erected during lengthening of Kittyhawk Drive. The Bridge was dedicated on the 24th August 2008, celebrating the 66th Anniversary of the Battle of Milne Bay. The name honours French, who was posthusmously awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery.
Refer to image.
- Conflicts commemorated
- Second World War, 1939–1945
- Memorial type
- Additional information
John Alexander French served in Queensland s first battalion raised during the Second World War. He received his Victoria cross posthumously for his bravery during the battle of Milne Bay on 4 September 1942. French is buried in Port Moresby (Bomana) War Cemetery, Papua New Guinea.
His citation for the award was announced in the London Gazette of January 12th, 1943:
"At Milne Bay, New Guinea, on September 4th 1942, during an attack by an Australian Infantry battalion on the Japanese position east of the Buna Mission, the section commanded by Corporal French was held up by terrific fire from three enemy machine-gun posts. Corporal French, ordering his men to take cover, himself advanced and silenced two with grenades. Then, armed with a sub-machine-gun, he attacked the third post. Although badly wounded by enemy fire he continued to advance until it, too, was silenced. His section pushed on, to find that the three enemy gun crews had been killed, and that Corporal French had died in front of the third gun pit. By his cool courage and disregard of his own safety, this non-commissioned officer saved his section from heavy casualties and was responsible for the successful conclusion of the attack."
(Source: Commonwelath War Graves Commisson - www.cwgc.org)
- Recorded by
- Lesley McBurney/Doug Tanner/Dennis Stocks
- Date recorded
- 29 April 2009