James was born to Daniel and Mary Mahony in the Glen Innes district in 1893. He became a School Teacher and was working at Bonshaw Public School when he enlisted at Newcastle NSW in September 1915. Prior to the War he spent twenty one months training with the 6th Australian Light Horse Regiment.
James was twenty three years old when he joined the 20th Battalion, 11th Reinforcement which sailed from Australia for Egypt on HMAT A71 Nestor in April 1916. He was sent to France in September where he was wounded in action in November. After receiving a gunshot wound to his knee, he was taken to the 36th Casualty Clearing Station in France where his leg was amputated and he subsequently died of wounds on 4 December 1916.
James was buried at Heilly Station Cemetery, Mericourt-L’Abbe, France. His personal effects which included a disc, letters, photos, French book and a notebook were returned to his Mother. As a result of his death, she was granted a pension of two pounds ($4) per fortnight.
The name of James Mahony/Mahoney is one of many inscribed on the Bonshaw Honor Roll and on the Glen Innes Anzac Park Memorial Gates.