On 11th November 2015 a new school memorial was unveiled at St Cyres School, Sully Road, Penarth, Wales.
Sergeant Pearse was among many others that were named and remembered.
Samuel George Pearse was born on 16th July 1897 at Penarth, Wales and lived there until 1911 when he accompanied his family to Mildura, Victoria, Australia. He then joined the local Legion of Frontersmen’s Unit. Aged 18 years he sailed from Melbourne with the 9th Reinforcement for the 7th Battalion reaching Gallipoli shortly before the evacuation and spent two weeks in the front line.
After the evacuation he went to France where he won the Military Medal for single-handedly raiding a German machine gun-post in Belgium. This was presented to him in the field by General Birdwood. He was described as ‘having an uter disregard of danger’.
After the Armistice together with 150 other Australians he volunteered to join the British Army as a private but was soon promoted to Sergeant aged 22years in the 45th Battallion for duty in Northern Russia.
On 29th August 1919 he cut his way though enemy barbed-wire under very heavy machine-gun and rifle fire and cleared a way for advancing troops to enter an enemy battery position. Seeing that a blockhouse was barassing the advance, he charged the blockhouse single-handed, killing the occupants with bombs. He met his death a minute later. For this he was awarded the Victoria Cross (VC). He is buried in the Archangel Allied Cemetery, Russian Federation.
G&DI is grateful to Dr Jonathan Hicks, Headmaster of St Cyres School for this information and photographs.