As we commemorate Anzac Day – I’m sharing some local stories to recognise and remember those who sacrificed so much, so we can enjoy what we have today.
The use of horses in the First World War marked a bit of a turning point … Initially they were considered essential, but over the course of the war, the vulnerability of horses to machine gun and artillery fire reduced their role on the battlefield.
By the end of the war, 8 million horses had been killed, and they were pretty much obsolete as a meaningful tool of war.
Dipso was a popular racehorse and picnic race performer in Dubbo, Nyngan and Warren around 1912 for the Brown family, owners of the ‘The Angle’ station and ‘Egelabra’, near Warren.
They bred and trained racehorses, as well as running cattle on their properties.
Brothers, Russell and Reg Brown, were fine horsemen and enlisted in the AIF’s 6th Light Horse Regiment.
Dipso became one of the original horses of that Regiment, embarking for Egypt with Trooper Reg Brown, on December 21, 1914.
Reg Brown was evacuated from Gallipoli to Malta with dysentery, and then to England, in September 1915.
Records show Reg transferred Dipso to the commanding officer of the 6th Light Horse Regiment, Major Stuart Tooth.
Major Tooth served out the duration of the war in Egypt, and rode Dipso in both the Sinai and Palestine campaigns.
Dipso also reportedly won a number of races in Egypt, among them the Grand Championship of that country, run over two miles.
Like so many of those who served, Dipso did not return home, in fact only one horse made it back to Australia.
Trooper/Lieutenant Reg Brown was killed in France on October 31 1918, having won the Military Cross while serving with the British Royal Field Artillery, which he transferred to while recovering in England.
Trooper Russell Brown and Major Stuart Tooth both returned to Australia in 1919.
Commemorating those who served, and remembering those who died. Lest we forget.