James enlisted on 27 Nov 1940 and posted to 17th Australian Infantry Training Battalion. He transferred to 8th Training Battalion on 21 May 1941 and embarked for the Middle East on 27 Jun 1941. Posted to Artillery Training Regiment on 25 Oct 1941 and after training was posted to 2/9th Australian Field Regiment, Royal Australian Artillery on 18 Dec 1943. He returned to Australia aboard "WEST POINT" on 31 Mar 1942.
James transferred to 1st Australian Army Provost on 24 Jul 1942 and promoted to Acting Corporal same day. He reverted to Private at his own request on 23 Dec 1942 and was posted to 1st Australian Commando Training Battalion on 25 Feb 1943.
He joined the 2/2nd on 15 May 1943 and embarked with the unit for New Guinea aboard “DUNTROON” on 17 Jun 1943 as a Trooper in No 8 Section, “C” Troop. At “URIA”, New Guinea, James showed Courage and Distinguished conduct during contact with the Japanese on 28 Nov 1943 and was awarded a Military Medal, London Gazette, 9 May 1944. He was medevac'd to Australia aboard "MANUNDA" on 5 Jan 1944 and after treatment returned to New Guinea aboard "ORMISTON" on 6 Jul 1944, re-joining the 2/2nd on 8 Jul 1944. He returned to Australia with the unit aboard “TAROONA” on 3 Sept 1944.
James left the 2/2nd on 3 Oct 1944 and was discharged on 16 Apr 1945.
CITATION for Military Medal
Robinson, James Trooper NX65982
“Trp Robinson was a Bren gunner with a small patrol which contacted a large enemy party near “URIA” N.G. on 28 Nov 1943. When our patrol became pinned down by enemy fire and was in danger of becoming surrounded and wiped out, Trp Robinson displaying a complete disregard for his own safety, in the face of heavy enemy fire, attacked the enemy position firing his Bren gun from the hip and shoulder. He caused casualties and confusion amongst the enemy and reduced enemy fire to such an extent that our patrol was able to move to a more favourable position. Throughout the action, Trp Robinson displayed courage well above the ordinary, his distinguished conduct in attacking the enemy single handed, enabled our patrol to extricate itself from a very difficult and dangerous position without loss” .
James is the only member of the unit to be awarded a Military Medal.
He was entitled to the 1939-45 Star, Africa Star, Pacific Star, War Medal and Australian Service Medal 1939-45, pictured below.
Edited by Peter Epps