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2nd Lieutenant Victor Stephen Henry Abbott - Royal Flying Corp 
 
He gave His life for King and Country
 
In 1860 Henry and Bridget Abbot established the family farm in Horokiwi Valley, this block later forming part of what is
now the Battle Hill Forestry Farm.[i] Henry ran both diary and sheep and slowly acquired more land expanding the holdings. When, in 1882, Henry died[ii] and the farm was inherited by his two youngest sons Nicolas and Roderick Abbott.
 
Roderick would remain a bachelor but in 1891 Nicolas married Selina Barrow[iii] whose family also farmed in the
Horokiwi Valley. Selina and Nicolas had two children, Ivy Elsia (1892[iv]) and Victor Stephen Henry Abbott (1893[v]).
 
Ivy and Victor are not listed as attending the local Pauatahanui or Judgeford schools but Victor did attend Wellington College. Victor was well known in the tennis circuit and is reputed to have won the Manawatu championship prior to
the outbreak of war.[vi]
 
Victor was reported in April 1916 to have privately travelled to England to enlist possibly in the Royal Navy as one newspaper item credits him with the naval rank of Sub-Lieutenant.
 
In October / September1916 Victor Abbott was commissioned as 2nd Lieutenant Abbott, Royal Flying Corps (RFC)
7th Reserve Squadron and was completing flying training at Netheravon, Wiltshire, England.[vii]. 2nd Lieutenant Abbott
was then transferred to the 12th Squadron, RFC, also based in Netheravon. The 12th Squadron transferred to France in September 1916 and it is probable that 2nd Lieutenant Abbott was due to fly with this unit as his death was noted as
‘prior to leaving for France.’[x]
 
On 15th September 1916 while on a training flight the engine on 2nd Lieutenant Abbott’s aircraft failed and he was killed
in the subsequent crash. 2nd Lieutenant Abbott was buried with full military honours in the Upavon Church Cemetery, Wiltshire.
 
There are four New Zealanders buried in the cemetery
all airmen, two from WW1 and two from WW2.[viii]
 
 
  
 
              In Loving Memory
                       of
       2nd Lieut Victor S H Abbott
              of New Zealand
  Who was killed in a flying accident
      Sept 15th 1916, aged 23 years
He gave His life for King and Country
 
 
Upavon Church Cemetery, Wiltshire, England
 
 
In 1918 Victor’s sister married Eric Lynch, a Gallipoli
veteran, after her father's death the couple farmed
the Horokiwi property with Ivy’s uncle, Roderick.
 
Eric Lynch gave the speech in reply, on behalf of
Returned Servicemen from the district, at the
1922 dedication of the Pauatahanui War memorial.

Victor Abbot is commemorated on the Pauatahanui War
Memorial and on the Pautahanui Roll of Honour held in
St Alban's Church, Pauatahanui. 
  
Notes
The modern spelling of Pauatahanui is used unless quoting
from papers of the time where Pauhatanui is used.

Traditionally Royal Naval Officers were not given a serial number.

Victor’s father Nicolas Abbott was a major force in the erection of the Pauatanui War Memorial.

It is not known what type of aricraft 2nd Lt Abbott was flying but the squadron would be equipped with the two seater 'pusher' the
Vickers FB.5 Gunbus in France.
 
Photographs
2nd Lieut VHS Abbott: The War Graves Photographic Project (TWGPP)
Background Vickers FB.5 Gunbus (replica) - Wikipedia
 
References
Helen Reilly (2013): Pauatahanui – a local history:
Archway Archives New Zealand – Military Records: Lt VHS Abbott 
Papers Past Online
New Zealand Births, Deaths & Marriages Online
 
 ​[i]  Abbott - Pauatahanui Families: Pauatahanui – a local history – Helen Reilly
[ii] Death – Henry Abbott: 1882/2523 BDM
[iii] Marriage – Barrow/Abbott: 1891/409 BDM
[iv] Birth – Ivy Elisa Abbott: 1892/6261  BDM
[v] Birth – Victor Stephen Henry Abbott: 1893/7177 BDM
[vi] Death of an Airman: New Zealand Herald 28 September 1916
[vii] Death of an Airman: New Zealand Herald 28 September 1916
[viii] Upavon Church Cemetery: NZ War Graves Project
[ix] 12th Squadron: Wikipedia.org/wiki/No2.squadron-RFC
[x] Memorial Unveiled – Ceremony at Pahautanui: Evening Post 18 January 1922.
 
 
​Vickers FB.5 Gunbus