Brit honours dead Toowoomba soldier
AT 25 years of age on September 22, 1917, Leslie George Rub died of wounds sustained from battle in Belgium during the First World War.
Almost exactly 100 years later, a man tens of thousands of kilometres away from Mr Rub’s hometown of Toowoomba has built a strong connection to the 2nd Australian Pioneer Battalion private.
So strong that he uncovered relics from Mr Rub’s past that paint a picture of the young Drayton man his family may never have known about.
That man, Kieran Moore, has dedicated a significant amount of time to tracking down Mr Rub’s family from the other side of the world.
A journey which began three years ago when in the United Kingdom, Mr Moore stumbled upon a poem written by Private Rub of Australia, culminated in him running 5km at Disneyland Paris for Legacy Australia in Leslie Rub’s honour.
The poem, “Christmas Day on the Somme”, immediately struck a chord with Mr Moore, who was looking for musical inspiration when he came across the words of the former Drayton man.
“I guess my real motivation is to honour Leslie's memory. I know the sacrifice so many soldiers made during WW1 and want to make sure their importance to the world today isn't forgotten,” he said.
“I feel that Leslie is still making a contribution to his country beyond even 100 years after his death and when I found out this race was on the 100th anniversary of Leslie's death it seemed like fate was telling me to do it.”
Sparking the intrigue of what life was like on the front line, Mr Moore began his research efforts.
Three years later, Mr Moore has decided to seek out any living members of Private Rub’s family.
“If I could speak to Leslie’s family I would tell them thank you on Leslie’s behalf,” he said.
“He made the world a better, safer place and I hope they know what a hero he was. I want them to know that he is remembered and that he’s still touching lives today – that’s a huge thing. I’d also like to let them know what a lovely spot Leslie ended up in. He’s surrounded by fields and peace and tranquillity. It’s a special place.
“Visiting his grave is incredibly humbling and the more I visit the more emotional it becomes. It’s a strange experience to stand and cry at the grave of someone who died 60 years before you were born. I do feel that somewhere out there Les is waiting for me with a cold beer and some day we’ll drink it together.”
“The fact that the universe can bring about such connections is amazing,” he said.
LEST WE FORGET: Kieran Moore at the grave of Private Leslie George Rub from Toowoomba.
2nd Australian Pioneer Battalion Private Leslie George Rub of Toowoomba died in Belgium during the First World War.