Australian and New Zealand forces began landing at Gallipoli at 4.30am on 25th April. Elvas carried his French New Testament in his shirt pocket, over his heart.
The Turkish Army constantly shelled the ANZACs with German-made Krupp 75mm field guns, firing shells packed with explosives and shrapnel bullets consisting of lead balls. The shells exploded on impact spraying the shrapnel bullets in all directions.
On 7th May, Elvas was struck directly over his heart by shrapnel from an exploding shell. He was carrying his French New Testament and Psalms back to front in his pocket. A lead shrapnel bullet struck the middle of the book, passing through the Psalms and Revelation and piercing the pages all the way to Acts. The Gospel pages stopped the bullet. The lead shrapnel ball still sits there today. In the back of his Bible, Elvas later wrote, “Shrapnel bullet from shell of 75mm field gun. About May 6 or 7 -1915”.
So many died on both sides in the first few weeks that the opposing sides managed to negotiate a truce on 24th May to bury the dead. The ANZAC evacuation was finally ordered in December 1915. Elvas was among the last to leave.