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Person Details
Leonard was the eldest son of Harry a home furnisher dealer and Mary Isobel Dawson, of 'Kentroyd' 20 Kent Road Harrogate Yorkshire. He was the brother of Hilda Mabel, Harold Franklyn, Alice Craven, Victor Reginald, and Neville Guy Dawson. In 1911 they lived at Forest Mount Starbeck Yorkshire.
He was a student at St Cuthbert's College, Sparken Hill, Worksop. He was an assistant house furnisher in 1911.
04 Jun 1915
695041 - CWGC Website
Second Lieutenant
13th Bn The Prince of Wales's Own (West Yorkshire Regiment)
Leonard enlisted in August, 1914 and obtained his commission in February 1915. He was later attached to the 1st Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers. He went to Gallipoli landing on 1st June 1915 and was reported missing on the 4th June after leading his platoon on an attack on a Turkish position. His body was never recovered and his is commemorated on the Helles Memorial Gallipoli, Turkey.
The following are extracts from local Harrogate newspapers regarding Leonard Dawson Harrogate Herald - 19th August 1914 Wednesday Gossip Leonard Dawson, son of Mr & Mrs H Dawson, and R J Riley, a well-known Harrogate Association football player, have both joined the Regular Army while the war lasts, and are now at York, where several other Harrogate men are stationed. Claro Times - 18th June 1915 Mr and Mrs H Dawson, of Harrogate, were informed by wire from the War Office on Sunday evening, that their son Leonard Dawson, who, held a commission in the 13th West Yorkshire Regiment, was missing. The news was received in the town with deep regret, for the friends of Leonard Dawson in Harrogate and district are legion. It was less than a month ago that Lieutenant Dawson left Harrogate for service, being on the reserve of officers. It is thought to be more than likely he was drafted to one of the battalions of the Lancashire Fusiliers for service in the Dardanelles, but when he left Liverpool his destination was unknown. A fortnight later, on June 4th, he was missing, so that he could not have been at the Dardanelles more than a couple of days before the capture. Three other officers who left Liverpool at the same time have also figured in the casualty lists. He was in his early youth a choirboy at St Peter's Church, and later became widely known as a clever entertainer at the piano, his services being in great demand. He was one of the first to join Kitchener's Army from Harrogate, enlisting in the ranks of the 10th West Yorkshires. Up to yesterday evening no further news had been received, but it is hoped that he is alive and well. Claro Times - 15th October 1915 The following account of how Lieutenant Leonard Dawson, son of Mr and Mrs H Dawson, of Kent Road, and a member of the firm of H Dawson and Company, Princes Street, Harrogate, met his death, was forwarded by Lieutenant Davison, of the 1st Lancashire Fusiliers, whose brother was also killed in the same advance in the Dardanelles on June 4th. "In the attack on a Turkish position, Lieutenant Dawson led his platoon right up to the first line of trenches, but on reaching these he was badly wounded. He then attempted to crawl back to our own lines, but was again shot, this time fatally. Shortly after this, the Turks, in order to drive us back, set fire to the gorse (which accounts for his being reported missing), as the country is covered with it". The officer who forwarded the above particulars adds the following touching tribute to Lieutenant Dawson's memory : "We were all immensely sorry, as he was a jolly fine chap, and very popular with everybody, and I only hope that if I am to meet my death, that I shall do so in the same way as he, for his was a gallant end".
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