From start to finish this search has taken over 6 years. Using the service record of 493 PTE Ernest Arthur Horne, 6th LHR, I could work out snippets of his life. Ernest was 39 when he enlisted for WWI. Prior to this he had served for 8 years with the Natal Mounted Police. He saw active service on Gallipoli and after the withdraw he served in the Sinai and Palestine campaign. The service record also provided the date of his death in 1950. Using this date I could match up his death from the NSW BDM and confirm that his father and mother were Robert and Elizabeth Horne. The NOK details given upon enlistment were his mother, Mrs E Horne at an address in London and his sister, Mrs William MacKinnon of Aberdeen. Then the trail went very cold.
Evey so often I'll revisit a search to see if anything new can be found. I've had a look at he Horne search several times but no new information has ever presented itself. That was until today. Using William MacKinnon as a start point I found a MacKinnon family listed in the Scottish 1901 census living in the same street as appears in the service record. The wife was listed as Alison F MacKinnon. More searching showed that Alison F was in fact Alison Frances Horne, the daughter of Robert and Elizabeth. 10 minutes after starting I had the link I needed.
Using all these new names, I found a family tree on Ancestry that included Alison and Ernest. The tree owner lives in Perth so a little more searching gave me a phone number and I was soon talking to the descendants of James Charles Horne the elder brother of Alison and Ernest.
The first 6 years of his search was pretty difficult, however, the last 60 minutes proved very successful. As can be seen from the photo this Victory Medal has had a hard life. It has been heavily polished as the details of the angels face are not very distinct. The edge is very dented and looks to have been run over with a lawn mower.
Thank you to Deborah N who sent the medal to me in June 2007.
The returned medal tally is now 1396.