Richard Kingsmill Pennefather Moore MC had been a stock inspector for the Department of Agriculture and Stock for eighteen months when he enlisted at Toowoomba on 11 January 1915. The son of Lt Col (R’td) Richard A Moore, a prominent Queensland civil servant, Richard Moore was appointed to the 11th Australian Light Horse Regiment (LHR). He saw action in Gallipoli with the 11th LHR before a transfer to the 2nd LHR on 29 August 1915.
He was part of the general Gallipoli evacuation, arriving in Alexandria, Egypt, on 26 December 1915. Here he re-joined the 11th LHR. During his time in Gallipoli, Richard Moore was promoted from Private to Sergeant to Squadron Sergeant Major. On 1 July 1916 he was seconded to the Imperial Camel Corps and promoted to 2nd Lieutenant. He remained with one or other of the Camel Battalions until July 1918.
It was while he was with the 3rd Anzac Camel Battalion in Palestine that he was awarded the Military Cross. On 6 November 1917, British and Australian forces were fighting to take the wells at Khuweilfeh from Turkish control. Moore, by that time a Lieutenant, was serving as Intelligence Officer to the Battalion and before dawn, while under heavy fire, managed to get close enough to the Turkish positions to obtain information which assisted the Battalion in taking the wells later that day.
Moore was detached to the Desert Corps Cavalry School in July 1918 for a month then went back to his unit, before moving to the 15th LHR in November 1918. He arrived back in Australia early in 1920.
Richard Moore returned to work at the Department of Agriculture and Stock. In the late 1920s he took up an offer to manage an ex-German Plantation in the Australian Mandated Territory, New Britain. In 1942 he was captured by the invading Japanese forces and placed on board the Montevideo Maru to be taken to the Chinese island of Hinan. The ship was sighted by the American submarine Sturgeon and torpedoed on 1 July 1942, with the loss of 1,054 prisoners, a number that included Richard Moore. The ship was not marked as a POW vessel.
The Roll of Honour in National Trust House is unable to be accessed during the construction work being undertaken for the Queen’s Wharf Integrated Resort Development.
- National Archives of Australia (Service Record for Richard Moore)
Australian War Memorial image B01195