Generally speaking, the names inscribed on war memorials indicate that the individual has experienced the horrors of the battlefield, but this is not always the case. For these exceptions, their stories are, nevertheless, poignant.
Percival Ernest Lyon was born on 22 November 1891, the fourth son of James and Alice Lyon.1 His father was a pioneer of the Mid North Coast and had connections to Cundletown, Marlee and Ellenborough on the Hastings River.2
Percy enlisted in July 1916 but fate decreed that his military career would be cut short. On 29 August 1916, he died of measles at the Coast Hospital, Little Bay.3 His parents would later question why they were not informed of his illness until at a very advanced stage.4
His body was brought back to the Manning and buried in Marlee Cemetery where his very distinctive, (though degraded) headstone bears testament to his military endeavour.
Cundletown’s “Anzac Avenue” planted in July 1917 included a camphor laurel planted in his memory by a “Miss Lyon”,5 and his name is inscribed on the honour roll at Cundletown Soldiers’ Memorial Hall and also on the Port Macquarie War Memorial.
Author: Penny Teerman
Photos by P Teerman, 2017.
2 Wingham Chronicle Tuesday 8 August 1939 Page 2
4 Northern Champion Wednesday 6 September 1916 Page 2
5 Northern Champion Wednesday 1 August 1917 Page 5