04 September 2018

Eric Gray

The next set of medals out of the Grafton Box are the WWI pair awarded to 5584 PTE Eric Arthur Gray. The Grays were one of the early pioneer families around the Lismore area of NSW. This meant that I was able to find quite a bit of information about Eric's father John James Gray. However, tracing the family through the 1940s to 1960s was a little difficult.
Eric was married to Nellie but I can find no evidence that they had any children. This forced me to look at Eric's siblings and thanks to John's obituary following his death in 1934, I had all the names I needed. The brother I followed was Moses Caleb Gray who I now know served with Eric in the 25th Battalion, AIF. Moses diary from a year of his service during WWI is still in the family.
At this point the search became a little more complicated. Moses' daughter married Rolland, known as Rolly, but finding the names of the current generation alluded me for a while. It wasn't until I found a picture of Rolly's headstone which included the names of his children that the last piece fell into place. I've just spoken to Eric's great nephew, David, who was able to fill in the blanks for me about Moses and told be about his diary.
David has been wearing replica medals on Anzac Day in honour of Moses and now will have Eric's original WWI pair to wear as well.
The returned medal tally is now 2248.

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