Medals Of The Month | November | Warrant Officer Class Two George Patrick RauchleBy The Cove November 27, 2020
For November we have the medals of Warrant Officer Class Two George Patrick Rauchle.
Honours and Awards
The Egypt Medal 1882-89 with clasp ‘Suakin 1885’
The Queen’s South Africa Medal with clasps; “South Africa 1901”, “Transvaal”, “Orange Free State” and “Cape Colony”
The Colonial Long Service and Good Conduct Medal (EVII)
George Patrick Rauchle was born at Emu Plains, NSW, on 11th October 1866, to Auguste Friedrich and Honor Ann Rauchle (nee O’Halloran). George's father was a German immigrant and his mother from Ireland. His father worked on the construction of the bridge across the Nepean River (the bridge is still standing today). The family moved to Orange, NSW when George was two years old and he resided in the Orange district for the remainder of his life. At age 14 George apprenticed as saddler. After his apprenticeship he worked for a coach builder then a blacksmith.
A Long Military Career
On the 30th January 1885 George enlisted at Victoria Barracks Sydney, as a driver in the New South Wales Artillery, and embarked on 3rd March as part of the infantry and artillery contingent for the Sudan. The contingent from NSW was mainly involved in building the railway from Suakin to Khartoum, before returning to Sydney on 19 June 1885. The Sudan campaign was the first-time soldiers of a self-governing Australian colony were to fight in an imperial war.
Over the next fourteen years George was promoted to Sergeant in the New South Wales permanent artillery, and in 1899 embarked on the Warrigal for service in South Africa, in the conflict that became known as the Second Boer War 1899-1902. The New South Wales permanent artillery was the only permanent Australian unit to serve in South Africa.
On the outbreak of the Great War, George enlisted in the 1AIF on 2nd November 1914 at the age of 48 years with the rank of Sergeant in the 3rd Battalion, Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force (AN&MEF) at Liverpool, NSW. He embarked for war service in German New Guinea on 28th November. At that period Rauchle had cumulatively had over 18 years of service in both the New South Wales Military Forces and the Commonwealth Military Forces Military Forces.
George was promoted to Warrant Officer Class 2 on 9th May 1915, “whilst doing duty as Master Gunner”. He returned to Australia from Rabaul, New Guinea on the S.S. Te Anau. On 7th December, Rauchle was struck off the strength of the battalion and discharged from the AN&MEF on 31st December. After the war, Rauchle worked as an orchardist in the Orange district.
Life after service
George married twice and had five children. He was a foundation member of Orange sub-branch of the RSL, and was its president in 1926. He was active in the Orange branch of the Voluntary Defence Corps during WWII. He worked for Orange Municipal Council for 17 years as caretaker of the Wade Park tennis courts until his retirement in 1948. On the 2nd of June 1953 he was awarded the Coronation Medal to commemorate the ascension to the throne of Queen Elizabeth II.
George’s son – Frederick Norman Rauchle – also served in WWI. A granddaughter - Dorothy Lillian Marsh – served in WWII.
George Patrick Rauchle died on 18th January 1963, aged 96. He was interred in Orange Cemetery (Church of England Section A, Grave 142). E Company, 2 RNSWR supplied the escort for his cortege.