Tag Archives: Gallipoli

Comment 1. received on my blog page ‘ My Life & Rhymes’ from Ian D Martyn 16 August 2019: 
Hi Anne,
‘Captain Ateo ‘Little Arthur’ Frandi’
Just stumbled across your 2014 article re the Long Service medal named to Ateo, found by Verna Crowley of Otaki.  . If you haven’t already been apprised of exactly what it is, I can tell you – I am in the FREE business of reuniting military medals with families:
The medal is the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal (CAFLSM).
The Volunteer Long Service Medal (VLSM) was instituted in 1894 as an award for long service by other ranks in the part-time Volunteer Force of the United Kingdom. In 1896, the grant of this medal was extended by Queen Victoria to members of Volunteer Forces throughout the British Empire and a separate new medal was instituted, the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies.
The CAFLSM was instituted by Queen Victoria in 1899 as a military long service award for part-time members of all ranks in any of the organised military forces of the British Colonies, Dependencies and Protectorates throughout the British Empire. The medal gradually superseded the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies in all these territories, with the exception of the Isle of Man, Bermuda and the Indian Empire.
In 1930, the CAFLSM along with the Volunteer Long Service Medal, the Volunteer Long Service Medal for India and the Colonies, the Militia Long Service Medal, the Special Reserve Long Service and Good Conduct Medal and the Territorial Efficiency Medal, were superseded by the Efficiency Medal in an effort to standardise recognition across the Empire.
The CAFLSM could be awarded for TWENTY years of service as a part-time member of any rank in any of the Colonial Auxiliary Forces. Qualifying service could be had by serving in the forces of more than one Colony or Protectorate. Service in the Militia and Volunteer Forces of the United Kingdom was also reckonable (added), so long as at least half of all qualifying service had been rendered in the forces of the Dominion, Colonies or Protectorates. Service on the West Coast of Africa counted as double time. Service on the permanent staff was not reckonable.
Officers holding the CAFLSM who were subsequently awarded the Colonial Auxiliary Forces OFFICERS’ DECORATION were not required to surrender the medal, but were not permitted to wear it any more until such time as the full periods of service required for both decoration and medal were completed.
On 25 January 1923, the Royal Warrant was amended in respect of part-time members who had actually served, or accepted the obligation of serving, beyond the boundaries of the Dominions, Colonies, Dependencies or Protectorates during the First World War. Service on the active list during WW1 was counted as DOUBLE when reckoning the qualifying service towards the requisite twenty years, whether such service was in the Naval Forces, Military Forces or Air Forces, e.g. 6mths on active list (not necessarily at war overseas) counted as 12mths qualifying service towards the 20 yrs required for the the award of the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal.
Kind regards
Ian – Medals Reunited New Zealand©
Thank you Ian, for taking the time to post this information on my blog. Ateo’s other descendants will be interested in learning more about his long service medal, especially his great nephew to whom I gave the medal. – Anne Frandi-Coory.


Comment  2. received on my blog page ‘My Life & Rhymes’ from Ian D Martyn 17 August 2019: 

My pleasure Anne. The era these medals were produced was a confusing one as there were a number that to the uninitiated appear to be the same among the 18 different long service medals issued by the UK and NZ between 1895-1940ish. There were four versions of Long Service medals of Ateo’s type alone that transitioned 3 sovereigns – Victoria, Edward VII and George V.

Ateo’s medal was the Edward VII version (apologies, I said Geo in the my previous comment) of which there were 2 types identified by the little claw that the ribbon suspender is attached to the medal by. There is a single-toe and a double double-toe claw – Ateo’s is the later. The sovereigns head (Victoria, Edward VI George V) was the only way to tell the difference as the wording on the other side was the same although ER VII words were set in an ornate frame on the medal.

The medal itself to a collector is quite valuable (in good condition with ribbon, NZ$350-$550) since most militia & volunteer medals only had a short life in medal terms before being transitioned either by amendments to their Royal Warrant, or by being made obsolete and replaced with a new award.

The Edward VII CAFLSM having a life of only 30yrs before it was made obsolete meant that Ateo had to be serving at least from 1910 otherwise he would have got the replacement award, the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Officers Decoration (OD).

If he did qualify for the OD, he would have had to remove the CAFLSM. (maybe the reason it was found?) We know Ateo was a Captain in 1911 so he would have had to serve at least until 1931 to get the OD, depending when he enlisted.
If no OD, all 20 qualifying years would have to have started at the latest by 1910.

The only way to know whether Ateo’s medal was obsolete or valid, is to know his enlistment date, length of service as a soldier/NCO, length of service as an officer, date he was commissioned, and his date of Discharge. Confused?



Not confused at all, Ian, and thanks once again. It does make sense as to why the medal was found in the collection of a non-relative. I know that Ateo was a military man through and through and although he was born in Italy, he was very loyal to New Zealand.

Anne Frandi-Coory



Captain Ateo Frandi 


Comment 3. received on my blog page ‘ My Life & Rhymes’ from Ian D Martyn 19 August 2019: 


Last comment Anne.
Ateo’s titles:
1891, Jan to 1911 >>> 179 Private to Sergeant – Wgtn City Volunteer Rifles; Zealandia Rifle Volunteers
1911 up to 18 Jan >>> 179 Colour Sergeant AGL Frandi – ‘G’ Company, 1st Battalion Wellington Rifles.
1911 from 19 Jan >>> 179 Captain AGL Frandi – 31st Company, Senior Cadets, the Office i/c YMCA Cadets, Wellington
1914 enlisted WW1 >> 10/1169 Captain AGL Frandi – 9th Company, Wellington Infantry Battalion, NZEF – 2nd Reinforcements
I have worked the medal stuff out … I first went through the military service files of all five Frandi brothers, all of whom served in WW1 with only Alfred Joseph serving during WW2 as well (and also his son Reginald but of course he was a generation later).
These gave me a good sense of what military service the family had been involved with however I found an additional file of Ateo’s in the NZ Archives which ran into 96 pages and gave me the answers I needed. The other useful clue was the photo on your blog of Ateo sitting wearing a sword and the date year 1912 which confirmed my findings.
In the photo Ateo is a Captain and is wearing two medals. 1912 is the year the NZ Volunteer Militia system transitioned to the NZ Territorial Force. Ateo had enlisted in the Wellington City (Volunteer) Rifles on 19 Jan 1891 as a Private. By Feb 1902 he was a Sgt and had completed 11yrs 41 days of “Efficient” volunteer service. To be passed as Efficient in any one year, a soldier had to attend so many training days and attend an annual camp, plus pass all the requisite skills required of them – then the could be recorded as being “Efficient”.
Accordingly, in 1903 Sgt Frandi was awarded the NZ Volunteer Service Medal (inst1902-1911, plain khaki ribbon) for completing 12 years of Efficient service. His next award came four years later in 1907 having completed 16 years of Efficient service. At that point he (still a Sergeant) the NZ Volunteer Long and Efficient Service Medal (inst 1887-1931, maroon ribbon with two central white stripes).
In 1911, having now completed 20 years and 15 days Efficient Volunteer & Territorial service, Ateo applies for the Colonial Auxiliary Forces Long Service Medal (CAFLSM) – it is approved. This medal replaced the 16 years NZ LESM in 1911.
The two medals Ateo is wearing in the photo (dated 1912) is the 12 year NZ VSM (plain khaki ribbon) and the 20 year CAFLSM (plain dark green ribbon). This is proven by the design on the back of the medal posted on your blog (GR VII version). I cannot see any particular reason why he should not also be wearing the 16 yr NZ LESM as well unless. That was 1907….
So – the question, where his NZ LESM (maroon/two white stripes) might be now?
It also means the CAFLSM that was found was NOT obsolete, it was a valid medal to be wearing until Ateo’s death.
In Mar 1910 Ateo, now a Colour Sergeant, transferred from the Wgtn City Rifles to the Zealandia Rifles Wgtn to start a new company of Cadets.
In Mar 1911 Ateo applies to be commissioned after 20 yrs of Volunteer service. This is where his file gets interesting. Ateo is commissioned in 1912 and almost immediately sits and passes his Captain’s promotion exam thereby confirming him in rank. Defence commissions a civilian (nil mil experience and not qualified by exam) also in the rank of Capt however with seniority for rank greater than Ateo’s! Result – to say Ateo is irate is an understatement as his file shows. Ateo resigns from the Volunteer Force after a flurry of public protestations. A public war of words erupts, covered in the NZ Times of the day (I guess even a man’s career wrangles with his boss was newsworthy in 1910s Wgtn).
Ateo writes to General Godley (head of NZ Military Forces then) …. the arguments for/against are all published in the newspapers ……… my take is that Ateo was technically in the right BUT, he was trying to overturn an entrenched Army policy …. junior officers’ never win those battles … you have to read his file to grasp it all (see NZ Times, see 20 Sep 1912) ….. The net result – Ateo publicly withdraws his resignation via public letter to Godley, and is reinstated.
Ateo enlists for WW1 NZEF service 12 Aug 1914 at Trentham – goes first to Egypt for training; on 25 Apr 1915 he is a “First Day Lander” with the Wellington Battalion at Gallipoli. Killed by a sniper leading an attack between 6 and 10 May 1915. (8th selected arbitrarily) – body not located.
For his service in WW1, although mother: Annunziata Frandi was NOK, medals were sent to sister Italia [Corich] at 16 Murphy Street, Thorndon, Wgtn. Italia was sent Ateo’s medals in 1922 as follows: 1914/15 Star, British War Medal 1914-18, Victory Medal. Italia also received Ateo’s Memorial Plaque & Scroll (sometimes called Death Plaque, Death Penny, Deadman’s Penny etc) and a Certificate of Service.
So, Ateo’s medal bar should have SIX medals on it. If you or others in your family are interested, Replica medals are available and can be worn as being representative of a deceased ancestor’s awards – they are permitted to be worn on Anzac Day and Armistice/Remembrance Day by descendant relatives (and …. there is no limit to the number of relatives who can wear a replica set of medals). I can help with this if interested.
In looking at the files of the brothers, I noted that three went to Gallipoli – Ateo, Alfred and Richard. Only two of these came home. In 1967, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the landings at Gallipoli the Australian and NZ govts struck the ANZAC (Gallipoli) Commemorative Medallion. Eligibility for the plaque was for all living Gallipoli veterans, and the next of kin of those who were killed or who died within two years of leaving Gallipoli/returning home. Those Gallipoli veterans who returned alive also received a miniature version of the plaque with their service number on the back which was a lapel badge.
The unique thing about the plaque was that it had to be applied for – it was not automatically sent out to families (an impossible task 50 years after the landing anyway). This also allowed the plaques to be engraved with the soldiers name on the back. The medallion was not designed to be worn but comes in a black case and is a display piece.
Fifty years, on many veterans had died by 1967, or did not hear about the plaque’s availability, were not interested, families were not really aware they could claim for a dead family veteran. There were hundreds left in Defence, but after 100 yrs, all have now been disposed of. As a result of new claims being raised by descendants who have found they would have been entitled (were they alive) brand new ANZAC Plaques are being produced for descendants who are making valid and approved claims (when they hear about it – they do from me).
I have found no evidence on any of the eligible Frandi men’s files that their ANZAC Plaques have ever been claimed !! Normally there is a stamp on the top page of a file which is signed off and dated on the day the Plaque/lapel badge was issue – there is nothing.
So far I have arranged for the issue of 5 of these in the last two years that had never been claimed. So, as I see it this may be your lucky blog post. There are three ANZAC Plaques with the Frandi name on them if you want them – some proof of Ancestral connection is required of course, however I can talk you through the requirements and pass you the relevant applications if you are interested (providing they have not already been claimed of course?). Email me if you decide to pursue this and I can get the ball rolling.
Kind regards
I. D. Martyn
[Maj. Rtd – NZ Army]
Medals Reunited New Zealand©

Thanks once  again, Ian.  I have altered Italia’s name above; it was often spelled  incorrectly on official documents.

Ian, I have contacted my cousin to whom I gave Ateo’s medal and asked him if he would like to request the three unclaimed ANZAC Plaques. One of us will be in touch.

Kind Regards,


A Tale Of Three Cities ISTANBUL 

-Bettany Hughes


A Book Review – 5 stars *****


Byzantion of Greece’s ancient past,  the capital of the Christian Byzantine Empire, famed Constantinople of New Rome and Muslim Ottoman Empire that today goes by the name of Istanbul, Turkish republic.

‘Istanbul is the city of many names’, writes Bettany Hughes: Byzantion, Byzantium, New Rome, Stambol, Islam-bol are just a few of them. And Istanbul today ‘is lapped by the Golden Horn, the Bosphorus, and the Sea of Marmara; to the north is the Black Sea and to the south, through the Hellespont or Dardanelles, the Mediterranean.’

A diamond mounted between two sapphires and two emeralds…the precious stone in the ring of a vast dominion which embraced the entire world as described in ‘The Dream of Osman’ c. AD 1280.

Hughes guides the reader around the city that I wish I had visited. It is obvious from reading this book that the author has walked Istanbul’s streets and knows the city well, and she has meticulously researched  its 8000 years of history. I can assure you that this is no dreary history book the likes of which bored us to tears at school. The ancient town of Byzantion’s King Byzas (legend has it that his father was Poseidon, his grandfather, Zeus) was well located at the intersection of trade routes. Eventually the Roman emperor Constantine decided that ‘Old Rome’ was too far away from all the action and over time the City of Constantine became Constantinople, the New Rome, capital of the Roman Empire itself. The gateway between East and  West. Constantinople’s Christian name was changed to Istanbul around 1923 after the fall of the Ottoman Empire.

The book has short chapters with clear and helpful titles, dated in both Western and Islamic calendar formats where appropriate.  It enables readers to navigate this vast book in piecemeal fashion, but I found it difficult to  put this book aside; it is so well researched and written, with personal written accounts from people who were present during many of the historical events, which made the book all the more fascinating. I particularly enjoyed the frequent references to current and recent archaeological digs the findings of which verify historical accounts.  Hughes includes several maps and colour plates, which I constantly referred to as I was reading. It is evident that the West owes far more to Eastern cultures than we have been ready to believe in the past. The Roman Empire pillaged much wealth from Egypt and the East and in turn the Ottomans pillaged from Roman territories. It is arguable that the rabble that made up early Western civilisation reached a turning point when it invaded and colonised Egypt.


Ottoman and Byzantine territory in the east Mediterranean c. AD 1451



Muslim and Christian lived in relatively peaceful harmony during the Ottoman era but both sides could be extremely brutal whenever their territories or power were threatened. The Ottomans, however, were far more than their harams and baths, which titillated and attracted travellers; they were skilled diplomats and traders. Christian slave boys ‘harvested’ from the West were trained as interpreters.  Called Dragomans, one of their critical attributes was their facility with languages, and some of them could speak up to seven languages which enabled the empire to spread its culture and bargain with valuable commodities to negotiate peace. When the Ottoman Empire began to crumble at the beginning of the twentieth century, Germany, France and Britain ‘fought over the spoils’ and it is apparent that the after-effects of this breaking up of once cohesive territories helped to turn Christianity and Islam against each other which we are still witnessing in modern times. Millions of refugees were displaced during the carve up of territories, and millions died.

This book, as well as being a great read, informs readers on how the current geo-political era came into being, and it does not always put the West in a good light. We owe so much of the great advances and wealth in our Western civilisation to the East, and let us not forget, to Islam

-Anne Frandi-Coory  27 October 2017


Also here on Anne Frandi-Coory’s Facebook page:

Julia Grego Smith was my grandmother Maria Grego Frandi’s younger sister. The following post was written by Julia’s grandson, Larry Smith. 18 October 2015.

Images and text copyright to Anne Frandi-Coory All Rights Reserved 18 October 2015.


Julia and Herbert Smith

Julia and Herbert Smith (image: Larry Smith)


Julia Grego married Herbert (Minto) Smith of Great Hockham, Norfolk in 1920 at the Church of the Holy Rood in Watford town centre – after Minto’s return from First World War service in the Middle East. On the marriage certificate, Minto is described as a 25-year-old bachelor and engineer’s fitter of 31 Ashley Road, Watford; and Julia as a 20-year-old spinster of 193 St Albans Road, Watford. Her father was Filippo Grego, a greengrocer. Their witnesses were Edward F. Didd and Filippo Grego (who signed with a mark). Both of Julia’s parents, Raffaela and Filippo Grego were illiterate.

Minto’s father and grandfather were agricultural labourers.  At the age of 19 Minto enlisted in the 4th battalion of the Norfolk Regiment in Norwich in September 1914. The battalion was training at Colchester, but in May 1915 it moved to Watford, which is when Minto met Julia. Unfortunately we have no stories about how they happened to meet.

Minto’s battalion was deployed to the Mediterranean in July 1915 and landed at Suvla Bay, on the Gallipoli peninsula, on August 10 – some months after the initial ANZAC landings in April. The entire Gallipoli campaign against the Turks was a failure, with almost 400,000 casualties on both sides. All Allied forces were withdrawn by late December 1915. However, in early December Minto had contracted typhoid and was evacuated back to England. After a year’s convalescence he was deployed to Egypt in January 1917 and was wounded in the second battle of Gaza. He was later posted to garrison duties in Egypt and ended the war as an acting sergeant.

After being demobilised at Purfleet in Surrey in July 1919, he headed for Watford to meet up with Julia again. After their wedding, Minto and Julia lived in Watford for a time and he worked for Filippo Grego briefly in the fish and chip shop. They moved around a bit before settling in Ashford, Middlesex in about 1939. At various times he was a chauffeur, drove a hearse and worked in a diesel engine factory. Julia and Minto eventually had two sons, Douglas and Roy.

Douglas enlisted in the Cheshire Regiment in 1939 and was deployed to North Africa in 1942, serving in Egypt, Iraq, Libya and Italy. After the war he spent two years in New Zealand as an approved migrant under the assisted immigration scheme, but returned to England in 1954 and married Valerie Diamond (d. 2010) in 1956.They produced no children.

Julia’s younger son, Roy, enlisted in the Royal Air Force and was posted to the Bahamas, where he married Barbara Malone, a Bahamian, on Harbour Island in December 1944. Barbara was the eldest daughter of district commissioner Ronald Malone (originally of Hope Town, Abaco) and Una Higgs (of Spanish Wells, Eleuthera). Roy and Barbara Smith went on to have two children – Larry and Luanne.

The Bahamas had been a British Crown colony since 1718, and it was the chosen place of exile for the ex-King (the Duke of Windsor) who was appointed governor for the duration of the war. Nassau (the capital) was used by the RAF as a training base for bomber crews, flying twin-engine Mitchell B-25’s and four-engine Liberator B-24’s.

Leading aircraftman Roy Smith was posted to the RAF’s No. 250 Air-Sea Rescue Unit. Equipped with motor torpedo boats, their function was to rescue the crews of aircraft which came down at sea (about four or five a year), to co-operate with naval forces in the area hunting German submarines, and to tow bombing targets. Some 3,000 British and Canadian personnel were stationed in The Bahamas during the war.

There were no hostilities near the islands, so operational flying training could be undertaken safely, and there was good flying weather year-round. The location also enabled Canadian personnel to crew up with their RAF counterparts. After training at Nassau, many crews would join 45 Air Transport Group to ferry aircraft across the Atlantic for active service.

Roy was transferred back to England in early 1945, and Barbara followed him a few weeks after VE day via train from Miami and convoy from New York. They returned to Nassau in 1948 where Roy helped start a wholesale business.The Bahamas had a population of about 70,000 back then.

In 1955, after the wholesale business foundered, my parents, Roy and Barbara moved back to Britain with their two young children, running a succession of small shops around London. But during a family reunion in Nassau in December 1961, they decided to return to The Bahamas for good. Roy eventually became manager of a large car dealership called Nassau Motor Company, which holds the Honda and General Motors franchises for The Bahamas. He retired in 1985 to Spanish Wells, where he still lives today. Barbara died in December 2011 at the age of 84 from complications due to a ruptured appendix..

Barbara’s paternal line descends from the widow of a loyalist militiaman from South Carolina, who moved to the Bahamas after the American Revolution. Her maternal line traces back to the Eleutherian Adventurers, Puritans who settled The Bahamas in 1648 from Bermuda.

Julia was born 25 February  1900 in Watford and died 18 June 2000 at a nursing home in Ashford. Douglas Percival was born in 1921 and died in January 2012 at a nursing home in Egham. Minto was born in 1895 and died at his home in Ashford in 1981.

-Larry Smith


Roy Smith's RAF crashboat

RAF Crash Boat Roy Smith served on during the war (image: Larry Smith)







early 19C parliament buildings Nassau

Early 19th Century Parliament buildings in downtown Nassau on a Sunday minus traffic. Statue of Queen Victoria resides over the town square (image: Larry Smith)



Julia’s sister Barbara Grego Johnson and brother  Joseph Grego double wedding.  

(image:Larry Smith)

Rear L to R: Filippo Grego, bride Floss’s brother, Jessie Grego with baby, bridegroom Joseph Grego, ?, bridegroom Laurie Johnson, Julia Grego, ?, Laurie Johnson’s father.

Front L to RPhilomena (Emmie) Grego, Raffaela Grego, bride Floss, bride Barbara Grego, Laurie Johnson’s mother, Lillie Grego.


Read More about the Grego family – Our Family Tree


Remembering Them in Our Street Names – FRANDI STREET


At 5.45pm on Friday 8th May 2015, the 100th anniversary of Ateo Frandi’s death at Gallipoli, a small ceremony to unveil a sign commemorating Captain Frandi was held at Frandi Street, Thorndon in Wellington, New Zealand.

Frandi Street in Thorndon is a quiet little residential cul de sac, once known as Grant Road North, and then briefly as High Street. On 14 June 1917 Wellington City Council confirmed a change of name to Frandi Street.


Ateo Giusto Leale Frandi 1873 – 1915


Frandi Street is named after Captain Ateo Giusto Leale Frandi, of the Wellington Infantry Battalion, who was killed at the second battle of Krithia. There are several versions of his death at the ’Daisy Patch’, either by machine gun fire or a sniper. Occasional references say he was killed on May 6th but the clear consensus is the 8th of May 1915.

With stalemate in the ANZAC area, ANZAC commander General Birdwood had sent Australian and New Zealand troops to support British, French and Indian troops attempting to capture the village of Krithia which lay between the ANZAC landing beaches and the British and French landings near Cape Helles at the southern end of the Gallipoli peninsula. Repeated attacks across open ground under heavy machine gun and rifle fire achieved temporary gains of barely a few hundred metres of ground and cost some 6300 Allied killed or wounded including 835 New Zealanders over just 4 days. Most of the dead including Captain Frandi were never identified, and were buried near where they died. After the war bodies were re-interred at nearby Twelve Tree Copse cemetery. One hundred and seventy-nine New Zealanders including Captain Frandi are commemorated there on the New Zealand memorial.

Ateo Frandi was born in Pisa, Italy on May 4th 1873, the second son of Annunziata and Aristodemo,  emigrating from Italy with his parents and two siblings to New Zealand in 1876. At the time of enlisting he was single, a piano tuner by trade, and was registered as living at 16 Murphy Street, Wellington. He had also worked for the DIC department store, and was an active member of the Garibaldi Club. See post re Frandi family’s arrival in New Zealand in 1876 OKURU SETTLEMENT

Captain Frandi had spent 24 years in the volunteers and territorials in Wellington, and for many years commanded the 31 Company (Wellington) Senior Cadets. He was rated as ‘one of the first authorities in infantry drill in New Zealand.’ His YMCA Cadets had won the New Zealand competitions for two years straight.   How Great Uncle Ateo’s War Service Medal found me.

In 1912 a dispute between Captain Frandi and the Defence Department over seniority between Captain Frandi and another officer was widely reported throughout the country and even referred to in Parliament on a number of occasions. Captain Frandi originally resigned over the dispute, but retracted his resignation and was able to resume his command of the Cadets.

Wellington was the embarkation port for some 60% of our soldiers, and Captain Frandi’s unit embarked for Egypt on 14 December 1914 with the Second Reinforcements. He arrived in Suez on 28 January 1915 and landed at ANZAC Cove on April 25th.

Major-General Godley, commanding the New Zealand Expeditionary Force at Gallipoli wrote, reporting Captain Frandi’s death – published in the Evening Post, “He did so much good service in Wellington that it should be known how well he did on active service” and “His company all say that they have never known any officer who gained so rapidly the confidence and liking of the men under him, and his bravery and fearlessness and qualities of leadership were most conspicuous.”

All the Frandi brothers enlisted; Lance Corporal Antonio Raffaello Frandi served in the 1st NZRB B Company, Driver.  Alfredo Giusseppe Frandi (Anne Frandi-Coory’s grandfather and youngest brother of Ateo) and nephew, Driver Ricciotti (Richard)  Frandi, were both in the Main Body Field Artillery. Nephew, Gunner William Donald Frandi, was in the 7th Field Artillery, and nephew Menotte Frandi also served. Nephew William Frandi, a gunner with the Field Artillery was reported wounded in the Evening Post of 27 September 1916 which said three others of the family were also serving at that point.


Menotte & William Frandi

Ateo’s nephews Ricciotti and William Frandi


Ateo’s Will named as first beneficiary  his sister Italia Corich and her daughters Helena and Elvira. The Pension Board granted his parents support in November 1915 on receiving confirmation that he had financially supported them. His father Aristodemo died aged 86 in 1919, and mother Annunziata aged 79 in 1920.

Captain Frandi was clearly held in high esteem. A concert in his memory was held by the Senior Cadets on the first of November 1915 in the Wellington Town Hall.

When the Carillon was built as a memorial to those who had served in the War, most of its 49 bells were named for specific battles, and in memory of individual soldiers. Captain Frandi’s sister, Italia, paid for bell number 30, ‘Krithia’, in his memory. His mother donated a memorial shield for the Cadets, now held at the Army Museum in Waiouru.

I saw Captain Frandi’s name on one of the white crosses of remembrance at each of several local school and community commemorations recently. At ANZAC commemorations we say ‘At the going down of the sun and in the morning, we will remember them.’ This Friday 8th as the sun goes down at 5.45, we will remember one of those men, as was intended when the Council of 1917 renamed a little street in Thorndon.

This post is taken from an article specially written by Wellington City Councillor, Andy Foster, for the commemoration of Frandi Street.

Photographs by Neil Price.


Frandi St 4Frandi St 1


Frandi St 5

Bugler, Andrew Weir, plays The Last Post

Frandi St 7

Left to right: Paul Glennie WCC, Andy Foster WCC, Italian Ambassador His Excellency Carmelo Barbarello, Captain Paul Prouse Officer Commanding Wellington Company 5/7 Battalion RNZ  Infantry Regiment, Sub Lieutenant Sean Audain (HMNZS Olphert)

Frandi St 2

The Last Post following Andy Foster’s reading of the dedication to Ateo Frandi.


Frandi St 3

Wellington City Councillor Andy Foster reads a statement by Anne Frandi-Coory on behalf of descendants of Ateo’s parents, Annunziata and Aristodemo Frandi.

On behalf of all descendants of Aristodemo and Annunziata Frandi, I would like to thank Andy Foster along with Wellington City Council for this commemoration to Ateo Frandi for his long  and dedicated service to the New Zealand Armed Forces. Ateo was greatly influenced  by his father, Aristodemo, in fighting for a country he loved. Aristodemo was a brave fighter in Italy’s struggle to free itself from foreign rulers, before he and Annunziata emigrated to New Zealand in 1876.  Ateo in his turn was so proud to be a part of the  ANZAC contingent to Gallipoli, and he urged his brothers and nephews to join up as a duty owed to their country. Ateo Giusto Leale Frandi, we will never forget you or the ultimate sacrifice you made. —- Anne Frandi-Coory

***This page is copyright to author Anne Frandi-Coory. No text or photograph can be copied or downloaded from this page without the written permission of Anne Frandi-Coory.***


Captain Ateo Giusto Leale Frandi killed at Gallipoli 8 May 1915

 The Mystery Surrounding His Colonial Auxiliary Forces Medal

Ateo Frandi original 2

Captain Ateo ‘Little Arthur’ Frandi


As Fate would have it, on 8 May in 2014 a comment was posted on my blog on the opening page: My Life & Rhymes

The writer was Verna Crowley from Otaki in New Zealand:

Hi Anne, I came across your story while I was researching Ateo Frandi…I have in my possession a medal with his name inscribed on it. It was issued in 1911 for his long service with the Colonial Auxiliary Forces. I would dearly love for it to be returned to his family, he has no direct issue but if you know of a family member I can pass it onto I would appreciate it. Thanks.


Head inscription reads: EDWARDVS Vll REX IMPERATOR



Reverse and rim inscriptions read: For Long Service In The Auxiliary Forces; No 179









I replied that I would so love the medal which I would treasure as would my family. The only memento I have from the Frandi family is a set of broken Rosary beads cherished by my mother, Doreen Frandi. Her father, Alfredo, was Ateo Frandi’s youngest brother and while Ateo died before she was born, Doreen knew Ateo’s sister, Italia, very well. By all accounts, Italia had a soft spot for the troubled Doreen. Ateo and his only sister, Italia, were close in age, both born in Pisa and devoted to each other. Both of Italia’s daughters were deceased and Italia’s only grandchild didn’t have any children. I truly didn’t know anyone else to recommend.

Ateo & Italia

Italia and Ateo


We subsequently continued our conversation by private email. Verna goes on to explain how the medal came to be in her possession, which I was eager to discover. Was she related to the Frandi family I had asked?

The medal was among Verna’s grandmother’s treasured possessions which after her death were handed down to Verna’s mother. It was alongside her first husband’s WW1 medals and papers. Verna has no idea whether either of her grandparents and my great uncle knew one another, but it is possible that they did; the time frame fits, according to Verna. Her grandparents married in 1916, and had a daughter together, (Verna’s mother) but her grandfather never returned from the war. He is buried at Cologne cemetery in Germany. Verna’s grandmother later remarried and had more children.

Tragedy intervenes once again and Verna’s mother suffers the same fate as her mother before her; she also lost her first husband, this time during WW2, and he is buried in Belgium. She also remarried and had three children to her second husband of whom Verna was the youngest. Verna’s mother died in 1971 but none of her three children were given any of their mother’s possessions. Later, her father married again and had more children to his second wife. When Verna’s father died in 2007 Verna and her sister, (their brother was deceased), contested their father’s Will. Some of the few of their mother’s possessions the sisters received were her first husband’s medals along with her father’s.The medals were still in the same box that their mother had always kept them in.

Verna continues in a letter which accompanied Ateo’s medal:

I was looking through your blog and read your post, Letters To Anne Frandi-Coory. I was blown away and I truly believe that Ateo’s medal was meant for you all along. I am convinced a higher power, maybe my mother, encouraged me to find you. If all three circumstances hadn’t come together at around the same time, the medal would probably have been lost forever and never returned to its rightful home.

• My sister and I received, in 2009, the few things that belonged to our mother
• Your memoir and Frandi family history  Whatever Happened To Ishtar?  was published in 2010,
• This significant ANZAC year of 2014 prompted us to scrutinise carefully the papers and medals we received as a result of contesting our father’s Will. discovering that one of the medals had a different name on it.

I couldn’t get that medal out of my mind and so I decided to research the name and other details inscribed on the medal. I found a few clues and of course your web site. If we had rightfully received our mother’s treasures years ago, and tried to find Ateo’s descendents at that time we would not have been able to trace any and that would have been the end of it.

56 Hewer Cres blog

56 Hewer Cres, Naenae, Wellington NZ … My mother Doreen Frandi lived here for many years with her son, Kevin.

Your mother, Doreen Frandi, lived at 56 Hewer Crescent, Naenae in Wellington and her next door neighbours at number 54 were the Hardies; a father and three children, Trevor, Roberta and Marianne. Roberta worked at the Phillip’s factory nearby for many years, possibly alongside Doreen. We lived at 28 Hewer Crescent.

Many connections, but the mystery remains: how did Verna’s mother come to have Ateo Frandi’s war service medal in her possession? Did Doreen give it to Verna’s mother for safe-keeping (Kevin believes this is unlikely) or perhaps Verna’s grandfather and Ateo were war mates and Italia gave the medal to him? Perhaps someone reading this post could enlighten us.


Capt Ateo & Signature 2

Autographed photo of Ateo Frandi


My great uncle Ateo Frandi was born in Pisa Italy on 4 May 1873. His family emigrated to  New Zealand in 1876 and eventually settled in Okuru on the West Coast of New Zealand in 1877. (See blog post OKURU SETTLEMENT).

Ateo was killed on the Daisy Patch at Cape Helles in the Dardanelles on Saturday 8 May 1915 during an attack on the Turkish position. He stood up to give an order when he was shot in the head by a sniper, dying instantly. His body was never recovered.  His sister Italia Frandi Corich proudly paid for his name to be engraved on one of the carillon bells, named Krithia. There were originally a total of 49 bells erected in the war memorial Peace Tower in Buckle Street, Wellington in 1931. Each bell had the name of a soldier who died at Gallipoli and who had no known grave.


Sargeant Ateo Frandi. 2

Ateo Frandi

There is a street named Frandi in honour of Ateo in Thorndon Street, Wellington New Zealand not far from where Ateo lived with his parents before he left for Gallipoli.

Read Here: The commemoration of Frandi Street in 2015 

-Anne Frandi-Coory

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