George James (Jim) Payne

by Jennifer and Collette Gainfort

George James (Jim) Payne was born in Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia, however he and my father both served for New Zealand. I feel this is a true ANZAC story.

My Grandfather served in both the 1st and 2nd World Wars, fighting in Gallipoli and France, where he was shot in the leg.

When we were kids we would ask him why he had a big lump on his knee and scars on his leg. He would never speak of his experiences in the so called ”Great War to end all wars”, however my father John Arnold Payne(538884N) told us the story... his father was the first man to have a metal plate put in his leg in England by an American surgeon to avoid amputation. He died of a heart attack aged 77 in 1973, walking up a hill after fishing.

He was a wonderful father and grandfather.

At the age of 14 my father was sent to work on the Parkinson’s farm, just out of Waihi, to help support the family. At 17yrs he put his age up (there were no computers to check your age back then) and went to Trentham for training and then shipped to North Africa to fight, what he thought could be the overseas trip of his life. Many years later he spent time living and educating people in 3rd world countries in the dairy industry.

My daughter and I attend the ANZAC day dawn service and march on their behalf each year at Martin Place, Sydney. We are both so proud to say we are descendants of ANZACs and how special it is to keep the memories of all ANZACs - not only on the 25th April, but every day we should be grateful to them for these two beautiful countries.