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Rifleman Bob Russell, of the Earl of Liverpool's Own, writing from "Somewhere in the sand" under date, December 27th 1915 to his father, Mr R. Russell, of Piiaha, Little River, gives the following account of the Christmas Day engagement of the Earl of Liverpool's Own.

.This is my,,third>; attempt to write to you. Each time I have had to destroy them on account of putting something in the letters I should not have put in. Where we are or who we are! ...fighting I am not allowed to say.' ' We received orders on Christmas that we were going into 'action ■ the-. next \ day. Well we were up on Christmas morning

at 3.30 a.m. and had two biscuits and;: some ,bully beef stew for breakfast. We left camp at 4 a.m. and arrived in the firing line at 6.45 a.m. I may mention I felt veryvshaky when the bullets started to whistle around us, but when the;enemy started to retreat I regained my courage again. The worst part of the fighting was between 12 noon and 2.30 p.m. when we were lying in the open with' the bullets whistling around us. We were being fired on and yet we could not see the. enemy. This was when we lost our first man, a tent mate of mine and I shall never forget the groans he let out while-he was alive. Conssidering the fire we were under we lost very' few men. We wiped out the enemy at about 5 p.m. after, chasing them for about six miles. I had what I call the pleasure of killing two myself. How many more I cannot say. We marched about five or <v six miles from where we finished up and camped-for the ilight.' All we had was 'our overcoats so I can tell "you we were pretty cold. We started back to camp again at 4 a.m. and arrived here about 8 a.m. All the tucker we had from the time we left camp until we arrived back again was three biscuits, a bottle of tea and a bottle of water. We all landed back very much worn out but all in the best of spirits. Rifleman Russell mentions.that he «had received papers and parcels sent to him, and Hunt and Wright who were with him were qhite well also. He had seen Ernie Wright and Andy Gilbert had looked him up, but they had not met. He concluded by saying that there were hundreds of things he would like to say if the censor would let him. I

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Bibliographic details

PENINSULA RIFLEMAN'S LETTER., Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3526, 29 February 1916

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PENINSULA RIFLEMAN'S LETTER. Akaroa Mail and Banks Peninsula Advertiser, Volume LXXV, Issue 3526, 29 February 1916

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