PRIVATE LESLIE CYRIL HOGAN
17TH SEPTEMBER 1917 AGE 20
BURIED: BIRR CROSS ROADS CEMETERY, YPRES, BELGIUM
Leslie Hogan's father chose his inscription; was it his father's kiss that lay on Hogan's forehead, or his mother's, or perhaps a girlfriend's? A forehead kiss is a chaste kiss so perhaps it was his mother's. Girlfriends make very few appearances in inscriptions, but then at that time girlfriends had no status, until a couple became engaged they were simply friends.
Hogan was a telegraph messenger from Grong Grong, New South Wales, where he had been born and brought up. He enlisted in December 1915 and was 18 and 10 months when he left Australia for France the following April. Hospitalised in England with frost bite in his feet in February 1917, he only returned to the Front at the end of August. He was killed two weeks later.
According to his Red Cross file, on 17 September Hogan was in Zouave trench not far from the Menin Road, near Hooge Dump.
"At about 7 pm Fritz started shelling and the second shell he put over landed right amongst a group of a dozen soldiers, including Hogan and another soldier named J.W.King (No. 6036) both them were killed and three others wounded. Informant was about 5 yards away at that time and was covered with the dust from the shell. He was dug out immediately and found to be dead. The following morning these two men, together with four others, who had been previously killed, were buried in one grave about 30 yards away from the line."