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Kiwi war hero's lost Bible is returned to family after 94-yrs

April 13, 2011 - London

A Bible that had been dropped by a New Zealand soldier during the bloody Battle of Messines, Belgium, in 1917, has been returned to the war hero's family after 94-years.

Richard Cook had dropped the mud-caked Bible as he came under fire, and it lay in the mud for months till Private Herbert Hodgson, of The Queen's Royal Regiment (West Surrey), picked it up, The Daily Express reported.

Hodgson was then knocked out by a shell, but he survived and put his escape down to the Bible, which he kept with him for the rest of his life.

He often wondered "which poor bugger" the Bible belonged to, and now his son David, 81, has flown to New Zealand to hand it to the family of Private Cook, who was killed, aged 26, at Passchendaele in October 1917.

Cook was traced through his service number scribbled on the Bible. It has now been given to New Zealand's National Army Museum.


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