GENEALOGY OF THE LELLO FAMILY
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Mother's name given on IGI as Eleanor. He was baptised in Liverpool, perhaps named after his
uncle George who lived and worked there too, after his grandfather William Lello and his other
grandfather James Crocket. No place of birth given on the IGI. Born in Liverpool.|
In the words of his older brother 'Harry' from a letter he sent to his daughter Eleanora 'Nell' in England dated 6 July 1938:
[George] followed me to Tas when 15. After a few years he went home and to the U.S.A. and drifted as far as the foot-hills of the Rockies in Wyoming. Back to home and to Scotland to my Aunt Mary's [note: Mary Crocket who married a Kerr and lived at LItle Richorn] farm to learn some farming, and then to Palmer Co. Nebraska with our Uncle John Lello (who had then left me in Frankford) to put in 8 years growing corn. His aunt Mary's home, at 'Little Richorn', is alongside the remains of : Richorn Motte, a medieval castle of the 12th or 13th century.
Back home, and then Cape Town, Elizabeth Town Durham, De? Bay and up to Umtali and Bulowayo (...0 where the lions patrolled the streets at night. Back to Tas (Once more to Elizabeth Town for a few years. Then to N.Z. where he carved a living as correspondent until he went to the war. He said he left Mas..land because of malaria. I think he left because the Jamieson Raid was close to, and he looked on it as a piece of bucaneering.'
While in Tasmania, as a gifted painter, who made many water colours. Then when he followed his uncle to North America, he completed some more. As at 2013, a sample of scans of these can be seen here: http://www.lendingtheway.com/george/index.html
He was in New Zealand working from 1906/7 until he enlisted. He worked as a war reporter for some English newspapers in the West Midlands.
Time spent in Tasmania, 15 years, in New Zealand 10 years.
Handwriting analysis of his army forms shows he was a sensuous individual, probably artistic, perhaps a painter, and also with a good singing voice. He shows no particular signs of being ambitious, but probably lacked a sense of direction, unable to untangle his physical needs from his daily life. A family photograph shows him as very dapper with a neat moustache, dark hair and brown eyes. He was in fact a talented water colour painter, leaving the family with a considerable collection of his works. These were went back to one of his sisters in England. They are still in family hands. A Google Search with the terms GEORGE LELLO WATER COLOUR PAINTINGS yields links to enable a view of them, including a slide show on YouTube.
His military records were sent for from New Zealand, and comprise 10 sheets. Going through them in no particular order:
1. History Sheet, Reinforcement 28, E.F. Form No. 3A. Unit 3rd Btn Auck Regt. F Coy. 1st Bn. 3rd N Z R B. Rank Pte. Surname Lello, Christian Name George, No. 54901. Occupation Reporter, last employer Brett and Co. Religion Liverpool England C of E 8.6.73. Last New Zealand address: 6 Shelly Beach Road, Auckland. Next-of-kin Mr Thomas Henry Lello (Father) 'The Gables' [struck through] Ludlow Eng. Mr Charles Lello (Cousin) Cardigan St., N.E. Valley, Dunedin. Picking out fresh items from this sheet, Rank at death, Rifleman. MEDAL ACTION COMPLETE 14 Feb 1924. No evidence of Will. [Although there is a probate record, he did not leave a will.] Legal next-of-kin Mr Thomas Henry Lello (F). St. Julians Road, Ludlow, Shropshire, England. Authority Western European 1917.1918. Service Medals: British War Medal Red Chevron, Victory Medal Blue Chevron. Sick record Ent. 7.5.19. A.F.13 165 date 25.11.1918 France. Died of Wounds at No. 12 (U.S.A.) Gen. Hospt. In the Field 25.11.1918. Died of wounds 7786, Ldn. 27.11.18, Died of wounds Nov 25th 1918 Rgt. Knee. Although the story in the family is that he died in a battle there, he was in fact so ill in the hospital he died, probably through septicaemia.
Missing B.R. 9/2, Buried at St. Sever Cem. Rouen. Dept by F.S. Vaughan att. 12 Gen. Hosp. 26.11.18. Advice re medals Authd. to Mr. T.H. Lello (F) St. Julians Road, Ludlow, Shropshire, England. [The address had been altered from Avenue to Road, and from Staffs to Shropshire.]
2. Service N.Z. 10/2/1917 - 14-7-17, Foreign 14-7-17. Cables: Wounds No. 7096 9.9.18 Ldn [London]. Rept. Wounded Aug 30th 1918. 7091 7.9.18. Ldn. ? France Sept 1st 1918, Wnd Multiple 12/G.H. Rouen (DK 644). [The remainder of the sheet is the same as Sheet 1.]
3 STATEMENT of the SERVICES of Lello George No. 54901.
E. coy 28. Posted to Pte [rank] 3.5.1917 T. RO.844.
4th Res. Btn Auck Regt. Marched in ex 28th Rifles. Pte. 25.9.1917. Nom Roll Sling.
4th Res. Btn. Auck. Regt. Proceeded overseas, Pte, 20.11.1917. P11O72 Sling 20.11.1917.
3rd Btn Auck Regt. Joined Btn + posted to 16th Coy. Pte. 18.12.1917. P11)30 Rouen 31.12.1917
Aust Regt. Att strength NZ Dive Wing 22 Rein C, Pte, 8.2.1918. P11O4, Rouen 18.5.1818. A 115102.
Aust Regt. Trans to 3 h.g.R.B. Pte, 21.2.1918. P11O4, Rouen 18.5.1818. A 11520.
1Bn 3 h.g. R.B. Joined Bn & posted to 15 A Coy. Rfmn 5.4.1918. P11O17. Rouen 26.4.18. A11923.
CONDUCT-SHEET. 54901 Rfm LELLO GEORGE DECEASED Medals to Mr Thomas Henry Lello (F) St. Julians Rd. Ludlow Shropshire England. BRITISH WAR MEDAL 28 OCT 1921. VICTORY MEDAL 6 SEP 1922. [Sections on marriage and children blank.]
4. Memorandum for The Postmaster, nothing filled in. This was to do paying the estate to an individual on production of Probate. There was no will, as we now know.
Also on this sheet is a note:
PLAQUE AND SCROLL. Cert. Posted 14.10.1922 [counter-initialled twice]. Soldier's name: Lello Geroge Reg. No. 54901. Roll No. 56205. Scroll despatched (Date): 27 Jul 1921. Recipient and address: Mr T. H. Lello. [The first address, The Gables, Ludlow, Staffordshire England] is crossed out and replaced with the St Julian's Road address.
5. & 6. CASUALTY FORM - ACTIVE SERVICE. Regiment or Corps: E28. [Crossed out 2rd BN Auckland Regt] 1st Bn 3rd NZ BDE A Coy. Regimental No. 54901 Rank Rfm Name: LELLO George. Enlisted: 10-2-17 Terms of Service: Duration of war. Service reckons from 10-2-17. Emb'd H.M.N.Z.T. 89. 14.7.17. Transhipped to H.M.T. "OMRAH" Cape Town 28/8/1917. Disembarked H.M.T. "OMRAH" Southampton 25.9.17. [The remainder of this sheet is a detailed sequence of postings from Sling 25.9.1917 to France, then into Camp in Etaples 22 November 1917, joining 3 Bn NZR posted to 16 Coy in the Field 18.12.1917. He was transferred to the 3rd NZ Riles on the ?21 Fevrier 1918, joined the Battn and posted to "A" Coy 5.4.1918. Wounded in Action 30 August 1818, admitted to ? the same day, transferred A.T.8 31/8/181. Admitted to Field USA General Hospital 1.9.1918. Died of wounds almost three months later on 25 November 1918. Death Report W6913. Wounds: Sev. R Knee. Face & Arm R. Signed by Geo. E. Lovell S/Lt. On the bottom of the form, upside down, are recorded the names and addresses of his father and cousin Charles.
7. ATTESTATION FOR GENERAL SERVICE. 'Amended Attestation'. Questions put to him are mostly returned as blank except for his name, the fact that his parents had never been resident in New Zealand, that he had truly stated the whole of his previous service. The Attestation was made at Trentham, New Zealand on 9th May 1917, witness Cpl. E Dyson, but the signature of the Attesting Officer A. A. Luckham Lt.
8. & 9. His original Attestation gave details, plainly not required, of his place of birth and parents (Thomas Henry Lello and Ellen Lello), his father's place of birth as Shropshire and his mother's as Scotland. He had been in New Zealand for 10 years. He was a 'Journal Reporter', and had been living at 6 Shelly Beach Road, Auck, had passed the Fourth Education Standard or its equivalent, and was working for the Brett Printg. & Publishing Co. Ltd. Willing to be vaccinated and inoculated, and to serve. Volunteering for the First available Reinforcement. He preferred to enlist for the artillery. he was 43 years and 8 months 5 feet 7 inches, weighed 135 lbs (9 st 9 lbs). Complexion 'Ruddy' [probably from excessive exposure to sun], eyes light brown, hair 'grey black', religious profession Ch. England. His Medical Examination showed he was in pretty good shape, with the only fault found a slight sign of varicocele.
10. FIELD SERVICE, Army Form B 2090A Report of Death of a Soldier to be forwarded to the War Office, etc. This is the equivalent of a death certificate, stating that he died 25 November 1918 at No. 12 (USA) General Hospital. In the Field. France.
His war record is on the Commonwealth War Graves site: Name: LELLO, GEORGE, Initials: G, Nationality: New Zealand [He was actually also a USA citizen]. Rank: Rifleman
Regiment: N.Z. Rifle Brigade. Unit Text: 1st Bn. 3rd (this refers to the reorganisation of the Battalion. George was posted to the 3rd New Zealand Bty. Mar 1916 - 11 Nov 1918.0. Age: 48. Date of Death: 25/11/1918. Service No: 54901. Additional information: Son of Thomas Henry Lello, of "The Laurels," Gravel Hill, Ludlow, Salop, England.
Casualty Type: Commonwealth War Dead. Grave/Memorial Reference: S. II. CC. 11. Cemetery: ST. SEVER CEMETERY EXTENSION, ROUEN. Country: France. Locality: Seine-Maritime. Visiting Information: OPENING TIMES: 1 March - 1 November: Monday-Saturday : 0815-1815 Sundays/Bank Holidays : 0815-1745 2 November-28 February: Every Day : 0815-1645. Location Information: St. Sever Cemetery and Extension is situated about 3 kilometres south of Rouen Cathedral and a short distance west of the road from Rouen to Elbeuf. Coming from Elbeuf/Caen on the N.138 follow Avenue Des Canadiens right down to the roundabout. Take the fourth exit into Boulevard Stanislas Girardin, and the cemetery lies 150 metres on the left. If coming from station Rive Gauche, Gare St Sever, follow Quai D'Elbeuf, Quai Jean Moulin, Quai Cavelier De La Salle into Avenue Jean Rondeaux, Av. De La Liberation, Bd. Du 11 Novembre to the roundabout. Take first exit into Boulevard Stanislas Girardin, the cemetery lies 150 metres on the left. St Sever is part of Le Petit Quevilly. The first CWGC signpost is just when you get to the entrance of the cemetery.
Historical Information: During the First World War, Commonwealth camps and hospitals were stationed on the southern outskirts of Rouen. A base supply depot and the 3rd Echelon of General Headquarters were also established in the city. Almost all of the hospitals at Rouen remained there for practically the whole of the war. They included eight general, five stationary, one British Red Cross and one labour hospital, and No. 2 Convalescent Depot. A number of the dead from these hospitals were buried in other cemeteries, but the great majority were taken to the city cemetery of St. Sever. In September 1916, it was found necessary to begin an extension, where the last burial took place in April 1920. During the Second World War, Rouen was again a hospital centre and the extension was used once more for the burial of Commonwealth servicemen, many of whom died as prisoners of war during the German occupation. The cemetery extension contains 8,345 Commonwealth burials of the First World War (ten of them unidentified) and 328 from the Second World War (18 of them unidentified). The extension was designed by Sir Reginald Blomfield. No. of Identified Casualties: 8653.