Modewarre names

Anzac hatSydney John ABBOTT

Service No:       2126
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 46th Battalion, 4th Reinforcement

Born 1894, Modewarre
Son of John and Ellen Abbott from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Sydney enlisted 1/05/1916 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 16/08/1916 from Melbourne on RMS Orontes
Served in France
Returned to Australia 8/1/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 7

Sydney arrived in Plymouth on 2nd October 1916 joining the 12th Battalion. In December the unit embarked per Princess Clementine for France. Sydney joined the 46th Battalion in the field at Etaples. Six months later, after being admitted to hospital with tonsillitis he re-joined his unit and was wounded four weeks later. On 10th April, 1917 he received a severe gun shot wound to the left thigh and was shipped to England to recover. Sydney returned to the front at Rouen on 23rd November, 1917. The following year, 10th September, 1918 he suffered gas poisoning subsequently he was shipped back to England. While recovering he lost 2 days pay for failing to appear at place of parole appointed by his CO. Sydney returned to Australia 8th January 1919 on board HMAT Orsova. He returned to Modewarre working as a labourer, married Ethel Matthews in 1922 before moving to Geelong West where he lived for many years. They had one child. Sydney died on 20 December, 1968 and is buried at Geelong Western Public cemetery.

 

Anzac hat KIAArthur Stanley BATSON

Service No:       2408
Rank:                Corporal
Unit:                 8th Light Horse Regiment, 17th Reinforcement

Born 1893, Wurdi-Boluc, Vic
Son of Stephen and Edith Batson from Winchelsea
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Arthur enlisted 7/02/1916 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 6/05/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A6 Clan Maccorquodale
Served in Egypt, Palestine
Died as a result of illness 14/10/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Wurdale
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre

On enlistment Arthur was posted to 8th Light Horse, 17th Reinforcements and marched into 3rd Training Regiment, Tel el Kebir, 11 June 1916. He subsequently joined the Imperial Camel Corps, 1 July 1916, and taken on strength of No 11 Company, Imperial Camel Corps, the same day. Four months later he transferred to the 3rd Anzac Battalion, Imperial Camel Brigade. Arthur was evacuated to hospital, El Arish, 29 December 1916 (pleurisy); on discharge in February he re-joined his unit in El Arish. A few weeks later he was back in hospital with pleurisy until June when he was discharged and joined the Imperial Camel Corps Brigade in Abbassia the same day. He proceeded to his unit, 4 July 1917 re-joining the 3rd Anzac Battalion, Imperial Camel Corps, El Shabith on 5 July 1917. Due to reorganisation of units he transferred to the 15th Light Horse in July 1918. He was back in hospital in October with pneumonia dangerously ill. Arthur died two weeks later on 14th October, 1918. He was buried by Chaplain A.P. Durant, 17 October 1918.

 

Anzac hatClarence Edward James BATSONModew - Batson C-1

Service No:       3982
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 22nd Battalion, 9th Reinforcement

Born 1897, Modewarre
Son of Fredrich and Mary Batson from Winchelsea
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Clarence enlisted 23/07/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 8/02/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A69 Warilda
Served in France
Returned to Australia 11/5/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 31

Clarence returned to grazing in Winchelsea when he completed his overseas service. He married Caroline Boddington in 1924, they settled in Portarlington raising one child and working as a labourer. With the beginning of World War 2, Clarence enlisted in 1940 and was discharged in 1942. He returned to Portarlington as a fisherman. Clarence died on 7th November 1956 and was buried at Winchelsea.

 

Anzac hat KIAJohn Henry BECKMAN

Service No:       6285
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 23rd Battalion, 18th Reinforcement

Born 1887, Mount Egerton
Son of John and Catherine Beckman from Mount Egerton
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

John enlisted 11/10/1916 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 23/11/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A20 Hororata
Served in Western Front
Died as a result of wounds 5/7/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 24

After as little of four weeks training John embarked for overseas. His unit arrived in France on 7th May 1917 via England. At the end of the second battle of Bullecourt in May. The 23rd Battalion succeeded in capturing all of its objectives, and holding them until relieved, but, subjected to heavy counter-attacks, the first day of this battle was the battalion’s single most costly of the war. John suffered a number of attacks of Orchitis, Ulcers and Pyrexia which caused him to spend time in hospital on a number of occasions joining his unit in between these medical outbreaks. Later in 1917 the battalion moved with the rest of the AIF to the Ypres sector in Belgium, and in October participated in the battle to secure Broodseinde Ridge. In April 1918 the 23rd helped to turn back the German spring offensive, and then took part in the battles that would mark the beginning of Germany’s defeat – Hamel, Amiens and Mont St Quentin. John participated in the battle of Hamel as part of the operations to straighten the Allied line France. He died of wounds received to the abdomen on 5/7/1918.

 

Anzac hatSydney Gilmore BLACKModew - Black SG-1

Service No:       3317
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 2nd Pioneer, Reinforcement 8

Born 1897, Modewarre
Son of John and Jane Black from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Sydney enlisted 17/11/1916 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 16/12/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A7 Medic
Served in France, England
Returned to Australia 25/12/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Wurdale
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 12

February 1917 marching into the Pioneer Training Battalion at Sutton Mandeville. He sailed for France in May 1917 returning to England for medical attention in October after a gunshot wound to his buttocks. On 30th May 1918 he proceeded back overseas to France re-joining the 2nd Pioneer Battalion. After illness at the beginning of 1919 he went to England on leave. After returning to France from leave in March he was assigned to the Graves Registration Detachment. He joined the 2nd Pioneer Battalion as they returned to England for transport back to Melbourne per “Port Denison” in November 1919. Sydney returned to farm at Winchelsea up to his death in 1944. He married Alice Jefferis in 1923 and they had four children.

 

Anzac hatEdward Ernest BLACKModew - Black EE-1

Service No:       1823
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 3rd Pioneer Battalion, 2nd Reinforcement

Born 1895, Portarlington
Son of John and Jane Black from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farm labourer

Edward enlisted 6/03/1916 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 28/07/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A32 Themistocles
Served in France, England
Returned to Australia 3/5/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Wurdale
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 16

Edward returned to farming at Wurdi Boluc after his war service. He married Eva McHarry in 1922 they had three children. In the late 1940’s they moved to Tabilk just outside of Nagambi where Edward continued farming. By 1954 they had moved into Nagambi with Edward share farming and son James as farm hand. Edward died at Bright in 1954.

 

Anzac hatJohn Andrew Joseph CLARKweb Wensleydale-9

Service No:       2037
Rank:                Driver
Unit:                 8th Light Horse Regiment, 14th Reinforcement

Born 1896, Geelong
Son of Andrew and Isabell Clark from South Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

John enlisted 28/10/1915 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 27/01/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A1 Hymettus
Served in Western Front, Egypt, England
Returned to Australia 2/3/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Wensleydale SS
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre

After completion of his service overseas Andrew left Victoria for Tasmania. In 1922 he was living in Derby and that was the last any family members or the AIF heard from him.

 

Anzac hat KIAGeorge   Thomas CLARKweb Wensleydale-12

Service No:       1549
Rank:                Trooper
Unit:                 8th Light Horse Regiment, 12th Reinforcement

Born 1894, Modewarre
Son of Andrew and Isabell Clark from South Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a contractor

George   enlisted 2/08/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 10/11/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A11 Ascanius
Served in Palestine
Killed in Action 19/4/1917
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Wensleydale SS
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre

George married Florence Squires three months after enlisting and just four days before embarking from Melbourne for overseas service. He arrived at Heliopolis on 26th December 1915 joining the 8th Light Horse Regiment, C Squadron. By December 1916, the allied advance had reached the Palestine frontier and the 8th was involved in the fighting to secure the Turkish outpost of Maghdaba on 23 December, which was captured at bayonet point. The next Turkish stronghold to be encountered was Gaza. George was involved in the two abortive battles to capture Gaza directly (27 March and 19 April 1917) the last battle is where he lost his life, killed in action on 19th April 1917. His service record notes that it is believed that he had been left unburied at the battle scene owing to the retirement of the troops.

 

Anzac hatWilliam  CLARK

Service No:       3491
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 22nd Battalion, 8th Reinforcement

Born 1897, Mount Moriac
Son of Peter and Elizabeth Clark from South Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

William enlisted 6/09/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 5/01/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A19 Afric
Served in Western Front
Returned to Australia 12/6/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 30

William arrived in France on 23rd June 1916 with the 58th Battalion. The battalion experienced its first taste of fighting on the Western Front in July when it was involved in the Battle of Fromelles, being in reserve and providing medical stretcher parties. The reserve force, about half of the battalion, was committed at the climax of the battle and lost a third of its strength to machine gun fire. It was at this time William was wounded in action by a gunshot wound to the neck on 13th July 1916. Subsequently he was transferred to England for recovery. He returned to France, re-joining his unit in the November. On 11th February 1917 he was temporarily attached to the 5th Division Sanitary Section before being permanently transferred in September then back to the 2nd Sanitary Section in September 1918. He returned to Australia per Port Darwin disembarking on 27th July 1919.

 

Anzac hatWilliam Charles CUTTS

Service No:       13275
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 Army Medical Corps, Special Reinforcements

Born 1893, Warracknabeal
Son of William and Sarah Cutts from East Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

William enlisted 29/07/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 7/03/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A63 Karoola
Served in France
Returned to Australia 25/3/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Anglesea
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 20

William was allocated initially to ‘D’ Company, Geelong before transferring to the Australian Medical Corps in Geelong, subsequently to the Broadmeadows camp embarking for overseas a few days later. While in Egypt he was temporarily detached from 13th Field Ambulance to Divisional Clearing Station embarking from Alexandria and disembarking in Marseilles on 13th June 1916. He had been ill a couple of times with Pyrexia of unknown origin (PUO) and transferred to hospital. On 24th November 1916 William was taken on strength to 12th Field Ambulance, still part of the 4th Division. In April-May the following year near the town of Vaulx, thousands of Australian casualties from the two battles of Bullecourt fought on 11–12 April and 3–16 May 1917. A small cemetery, Vaulx Australian Cemetery was started by the 12th Australian Field Ambulance – and the work during the two battles was described as ‘extremely heavy’. According to the official Australian medical history, 234 Australian Army Medical Corps (AAMC) personnel were either killed or wounded during this period, and a diarist of the 4th Field Ambulance (also part of the 4th Division Medical Services) described the situation on 11 April at the height of the first battle of Bullecourt: …the doctors with their assistants never stopped … the stretcher bearers had one continuous stream of wounded and barely had time to eat. Every possible man helped to carry the wounded in … The weather kept fine till the afternoon and then the snow came and it was frightfully difficult for the bearers to pick their tracks. The men were drenched and cold, but as nothing as compared to the wounded who lay out in the snow. It was a sight to see the smaller men stick to their job, backwards and forwards … [It] was the most solid days carrying in France.
Unnamed 4th Field Ambulance diarist, quoted in AG Butler, The Western Front, Vol II, Official History of the Australian Army Medical Services, 1914–1918, Canberra, 1940, p. 136

On 13th March, 1919 William marched out to England AAMC Training Depot returning home the following month via “Port Denison” as part of the nursing staff; though he was admitted to the hospital on board ship with influenza during the journey home. Once home William lived back with his parents for a short time before moving out to farm at Mt. Moriac. In 1921 he married Winnie Brown and they had two children. By 1936 William and Winnie were living at Barrabool, with William continuing to farm. In 1954 he was listed as a grazier and they had moved to Belmont. William died at Geelong in 1971.

 

Anzac hatWilliam James DAWSONfamilies-modew-Dawson

Service No:       18718
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 May 1917 Reinforcements

Born 1892, Winchelsea
Son of Charles and Harriet Dawson from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

William enlisted 3/11/1916 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 8/08/1917 from Sydney on HMAT A68 Anchises
Served in England, France
Returned to Australia 6/9/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 23

Bill, a 23 year old single man who was working in Cohuna as a farm labourer at the time of enlistment in November 1916 had no previous military experience. He trained at Seymour with the Engineer Reinforcements with the rank of Private. Within four months he was a Sapper, three months later a Driver. The Engineers undertook a raft of tasks broadly divided into mobility, counter mobility and construction as well as survey and mapping to tunnelling and mining. Specifically the tasks included the preparation and supervision of the construction of defensive and gun positions, excavation of trenches and dugouts, erection of wire and other obstacles, preparation of command posts, signalling and water supply, field engineering, road and bridge construction and route maintenance. Bill embarked with the 4th Field Company Engineers on the HMAT Sydney on 8 August 1917 arriving in Liverpool two months later. After 8 weeks in England he proceeded overseas to France on 31 January 1918. In March 1918 the Fourth Division was rushed to the Somme region to stem the German Offensive. There it repulsed the advancing Germans in hard fought battles at Hebuterne and Dernancourt. In April its 13th Infantry Brigade was involved in the counterattack at Villers-Bretonneux.

The Fourth Division went on to fight in the Battles of Hamel, Amiens and the Hindenburg Line, finally reaching the town of Bellenglise. As the Battalion was marching towards the front to re-join battle lines Bill was admitted to hospital with an illness. He was a patient until January 1919, and stayed in England returning to Australia per “Euripides” on 20 October 1919, discharged two months later. Once home Bill returned to working as a labourer living in Cohuna. He married Alice Sutherland in 1928 at Cohuna and they had four children. William and Alice moved to Mitiamo near Echuca and farmed the land. They stayed there until the mid 1940s when they moved back to farming at Cohuna. This was a brief shift, by 1954 they had moved to Geelong West where Bill worked as a labourer. He died at Geelong on 6 July 1969.

 

Anzac hatClifford Charles DENTRY

Service No:       730
Rank:                Staff Sergeant  .
Unit:                 29th Battalion, B Company

Born 1884, Carlton
Son of Charles and Flora Dentry from Brunswick
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a clerk

Clifford enlisted 22/07/1915 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 10/11/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A11 Ascanius
Served in France
He was decorated with the Meritorious Service Medal (MSM)
Returned to Australia 8/5/1919
His name is listed on the St. Saviour’s Modewarre honour board.

Clifford entered the training facility at Seymour and was attached to the newly formed 29th Battalion, B Company on 22 July 1915. He embarked for active service abroad as part of the 5th Division with the 8th Infantry Brigade, 29th Infantry Battalion (Victoria) and disembarked at Suez on 7 December 1915. The battalion arrived in the Middle East too late to take part in the fighting at Gallipoli, and as a result they were initially used to undertake defensive duties to protect the Suez Canal from Ottoman forces and they also undertook an extensive training program. On 16 June 1916 they embarked at Alexandria to join British Expeditionary Force disembarking in Marseilles a week later and afterwards were transported by rail to Hazebrouk. Clifford was promoted to Corporal during this time. By this stage the Battle of the Somme was underway and going badly for the British. The division were dispatched to the quiet sector near Armentieres. The 5th Division, the most inexperienced of the Australian divisions in France, would be the first to see major action in the Battle of Fromells, a week after going into the trenches in July. The 29th Battalion undertook a difficult two-day 29-mile (47 km) approach march over cobbled roads with loads of up to 70–75 pounds (32–34 kg) before arriving at the front on the night of 10/11 July. Taking up a position between Boutillerie and Condonerrie in the Bois Grenier, they relieved the 13th Battalion and on 19 July subsequently took part in an attack against the German positions around the “Delangre Farm” which was being held by the 21st Bavarian Reserve Infantry Regiment. Following the attack, the battalion held the line for another 11 days, beating off a particularly heavy German counterattack on 20 July, before they were eventually relieved. This battle was responsible for the greatest 24 hour loss of Australian lives than any other battle ever.

The 5th Division was not ready for further combat until October 1916 when it joined other Australian divisions on the Somme in extreme weather conditions. During November and December Clifford was in hospital recovering from infection. On 3 Jan 1917 he was promoted to Staff Sergeant just prior to re-joining the 8th Infantry Brigade Head Quarters. When the German retreat to the Hindenburg Line began on 24 February the division joined the pursuit, skirmishing with the German screen covering the withdrawal. The 5th Division avoided the first fighting at Bullecourt but was thrown into the closing stages of the Second Battle of Bullecourt which had begun on 3 May 1917. The division was mainly responsible for holding on against German counter-attacks. A long rest from battle followed, and Clifford was transferred on 24 June to the 3rd Army Summer Base Camp re-joining his unit on 8 July. However, on 28 July he became seriously ill with fever – Pyrexia of Unknown Origin (PUO) and admitted to 8th A.F. Ambulance, then transferred to Rouen hospital two weeks later, then on to England, the final diagnosis was Lobar Pneumonia. On 12 October he was discharged from hospital and granted furlough for two weeks. Clifford left hospital on 6 Feb to the overseas training brigade, Longbridge Deverill before proceeding overseas to France on 14 February arriving the next day at the A.I.B Depot, Havre. The following week he rejoined the 8th Infantry Brigade just before the 5th Division returned to action in late March as the German Spring offensive launched on 21 March began to threaten the vital rail hub of Amiens. On 4 April the 15th Brigade, which had been guarding crossings of the River Somme, moved to hold Hill 104 north of the town of Villers-Bretonneux, a place that was to become famous in Anzac legend. By mid-April a renewed German push for Amiens was evident and the entire 5th Division was put into the line astride the Somme. On 24 April Clifford was wounded in action as a result of being gassed and admitted to the 3rd General Hospial in La Traport. Three weeks later he was back at the 8th Australian Infantry Base Head Quarters, then two days later readmitted to the 14th Field Ambulance with PUO. With his temperature settling quickly he rejoined his unit 29 May. When the “Hundred Days” campaign began with the Battle of Amiens on 8 August 1918, the Australian Corps attacked from between Villers-Bretonneux and Hamel. The 5th Division was to follow up the initial attack of the 2nd Division, passing through to take Harbonnieres, an advance of two miles. On the following day, the 5th Division, which had meant to be relieved by the 1st Division, continued the advance with the 15th Brigade supporting the neighbouring advance made by the Canadian Corps and the 8th Brigade taking Vauvillers. It was here that Clifford earned his MSM…..
Meritorious Service Medal
This N.C.O. rendered invaluable assistance to the Brigade Staff during the recent successful advance from VILLERS BRETONNEUX to the SOMME, and at all times has displayed extraordinary capacity zeal and enterprise and attention to detail resulting in a high standard of proficiency in the Brigade Orderly Room. During operations he worked at high pressure with little respite and showed loyalty and devotion to duty worthy of the best traditions of the A.I.F.’
Source: ‘Commonwealth Gazette’ No. 67 Date: 3 June 1919
In late August 1918 the 5th Division followed the German retreat to the Somme near Péronne. On 31 August, while the 2nd Division attacked Mont St Quentin, the 5th Division stood ready to exploit any opportunity to cross the Somme and take Pérrone. On 1 September 1918 the 14th Brigade captured the woods north and followed up by taking the main part of the town. The battalion fought its last battle of the war in late September alongside the US 30th Infantry Division, when they breached the German defences along the Hindenburg Line as part of the final Allied offensive of the war.[4] Aimed at the Le CateletLine near Bellicourt, the battalion began its advance on Nauroy on 29 September, moving on the left flank beside elements of the US 117th Infantry Regiment, with the 32nd Battalion in support. The attack proved highly successful and 59 prisoners were captured along with four field guns and a quantity of German small arms. Against this the battalion lost 17 men killed and 63 wounded.[18]
5 Mar 1919 Marched out for return to Australia, disembarked at Waymouth a week later leaving England for return to Australia on 8 May per H.T. ‘Devanha’ disembarking at Melbourne on 23 June 1919. Discharged from the AIF at Melbourne on 15 August medically unfit because of the effects of being gassed.
Clifford returned home to live with his parents at Brunswick and he continued his job as a clerk. After marrying Helena (Nellie) McRae in 1923 they lived in Elsternwick briefly before making Hampton their home. Clifford became a manager and the father of two daughters and three grandchildren. He died on 21 April 1956 at the Heidelberg Repatriation Hospital.

 

Anzac hatHenry St Omer DENTRYweb Wensleydale-7

Service No:       7220
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 6th Battalion, 24th Reinforcement

Born 1881, Geelong
Son of Henry and Grace Dentry from Newtown
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a auctioneer

Henry enlisted 13/01/1916 at Melbourne as a married man
He embarked for overseas 19/02/1917 from Melbourne on HMAT A70 Ballarat
Served in Western Front
Returned to Australia 27/2/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Wensleydale SS
–  Wurdale
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 32

Henry, auctioneer, married man and father from Newtown enlisted in the AIF on 23 November 1916. He was appointed to the 6th Battalion, 24 Reinforcements at Royal Park training grounds. After eight weeks training he embarked from Melbourne per HMAT Ballarat, disembarking at Devonport on 25 April 1917. It was a different type of disembarking……….. the troop transport HMAT BALLLARAT was approaching Southern England, off The Lizard, when she was torpedoed by a U-boat just after 2pm on April 25, the second Anzac Day. The 1600 men of the 24th Reinforcements Regiment had lunched, and officers were planning an Anzac Day service later in the day. On this occasion, all 1720 souls aboard BALLARAT survived. The New York Times report on her sinking said the men sang songs and played cards as the ship was sinking. Songs mentioned were ‘Australia Will Be There,’ ‘The Long Trail’ and ‘So Long Lettie.’ The bandmaster was playing doleful notes on his cornet, and down in the saloon a Sydney soldier named Michael Keene was playing rag-time on a piano, so rapt that someone had to be sent to get him as the last lifeboat left. Once on land Henry marched into the 2nd Training Battalion at Durrington. He stayed in England for eleven months before proceeding overseas to France on 6 March 1918 attached to the 6th Battalion. In March and April 1918 the battalion helped stop the German spring offensive and later participated in the Allies’ own offensive, launched near Amiens on 8 August 1918. The advance by British and empire troops was the greatest success in a single day on the Western Front, one that German General Erich Ludendorff described as “the black day of the German Army in this war”. Henry was poisoned with gas on 4 October 1918 and invalided back to England and once recovered he returned to Australia per ‘Orsova’. While overseas Grace and their daughter had a change of address and were now living in Toorak. On return Henry joined her continuing his occupation as an auctioneer. By 1924 they had moved to Bambra where Henry was a farmer until his death on 10 November 1947 at Heidelberg.

 

Anzac hatJacob  DEPPELER

Service No:       3141
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 57th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement

Born 1895, Lovely Banks
Son of Andrew and Bertha Deppeler from
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Jacob enlisted 24/10/1916 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 16/12/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A7 Medic
Served in France
Returned to Australia 8/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 18

On 18th February, 1917, Jacoob disembarked at Plymouth and marched into 15th Training Battalion, at Hurdcott. Six weeks later he was taken on strength of 67th Battalion, Windmill Hill proceeding oversees to France on 25th August 1917. The next day he marched into 3rd Australian Divisional Base Depot (A.D.B.D.), Rouelles then on 1st September 1917 into the 37th Battalion in the field. The 37th fought in its first major battle at Messines, in Belgium, between 7-9 June 1917. The battalion fought in another two major attacks in this sector – the battle of Broodseinde on 4 October, and the battle of Passchendaele on 12 October. It was during the battle of Broodseinde on 4/10/1917 Jacob was wounded in action with a gun shot wound to his hand and transferred to England admitted to 1st Birmingham War Hospital. Belgium remained the focus of the 37th Battalion’s activities for the next five months, until it was rushed south to France in late March 1918 to meet the German Army’s Spring Offensive. He proceeded back overseas to France eight weeks after being wounded, re-joining the 37th Battalion in the field on 1st January 1918. On 2nd March 1918 Jacob was transferred to the 5th Pioneer Battalion to the Somme. Much of their work here was protecting the line and strategic bridges and trench systems built and a series of strong posts dug and subsequently connected. On October 24th Jacob was admitted again to hospital for a couple of days with a septic abrasion to the left heel. He rejoined his unit after some leave in Paris and a furlough in the United Kingdom then marched out from the unit for return to Australia on 15/5/1919.

 

Anzac hatGodfrey  DEPPELERModew - Deppeler G-1

Service No:       3497
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 22nd Battalion, 8th Reinforcement

Born 1893, Geelong
Son of Andrew and Bertha Deppler from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Godfrey enlisted 26/07/1915 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 5/01/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A19 Afric
Served in France
Returned to Australia 8/5/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 21

As a young 22 year old labourer from Modewarre Godfrey enlisted in Melbourne on 12 July 1915. He entered the Training Camp at Geelong on 26 July. Initially assigned to the 22nd Battalion, 8th Reinforcements which embarked from Melbourne about the HMAT Afric on 5 January 1916. On arrival in Egypt 23 February 1916 he was allotted to join the 57th Battalion at Tel-el-Kebir. He joined them on 3 March however the next day he was transferred to the 5th Pioneer Battalion which had just been formed. After constructing a rifle range & some preliminary training the battalion moved to Ferry Post on the Eastern side of the Suez Canal where it became a unit of the 5th Australian Division. Here under extreme weather conditions of heat, wind and dust further training, repairing of the Desert Railway and constructing a large portion of the main Canal defences was carried out. Godfrey was admitted to the 4th Field Ambulance during April, promoted to Driver in May, then his unit embarked to join the British Expeditionary Force in June. They embarked on the “Canada” from Alexandria arriving at Marseilles on 25 June 1916. The Battalion moved on to Bae St Maur, 3 miles from the front line with the first task of burying telephone cable then the Battalion was ordered to build a mile of railway line while enduring attacks from the air. The line was to bring material up for use during the unsuccessful attack on 19 July. After the attack the Battalion repaired the front line and communication trenches. They also successfully carried out a large drainage scheme requiring careful grading – during the winter of 1916-17 the water did not rise above the duckboard level and there was the task of running a large timber mill operating a plant for making concrete slabs, the control of trench tramways and general cleaning work. In October the Battalion moved south to the battle for Somme. Their job was to maintain communication trenches however the rain caused the trenches to be filled with mud. While the 5th Division moved out in November the Pioneer Battalion stayed on to maintain the road. Within two weeks the Bernafay – Longueval road was converted from a series of lakes and mud to a properly drained road with a fairly hard surface which traffic could negotiate without risk. Still on the battlefields of Somme they built more trenches to the front line, the sea of mud made the task very arduous and tiring.

On 17 March 1917 the Germans withdrew all along this section of the front meaning no more plugging and repairing there was a need for more duckwalk track and trench tramways which was extended through to Beaulencourt. The Battalion moved to a comfortable camp at Fricourt for a small amount of training but rest and sport were the main attention. The stay was short-lived and on 9 May the men were moved to a camp near Vaulx for support of the battles on the Hindenburg Line. Further building and maintenance of battery positions, communication trenches were carried out. The Battalion moved away from the front line digging defences for villages as well as further training and respite. Sport and swimming were popular pursuits in some of the towns. While Godfrey was on two weeks leave in UK in September the Battalion was on the move to the Ypres district to take part in the large offensive that was in progress. Building and repairing roads, trenches and duckwalks often under fire from heavy shelling and aircraft fire. During December the 5th Division was moved to near Boulonge for a rest until the end of January 1918 when they returned to the Messines area to repair the roads, build entrenched strong posts and miles of barbed wire to be constructed. Early in March however the enemy shelling became more active and in April the Battalion was moved back to Villers Brettoneux on The Somme once again. Here they endured shelling and gassing. They moved away from the area as the Germans captured Villers Brettoneux (for one day only). At the end of May all forward work was handed over to the 4th Pioneer Battalion – by then in addition to other work such as bridge guards, bomb-proof shelters and roads; some 13 miles of trenches had been dug to a depth of 4’ 6” and effectively wired. The 5th Pioneer Battalion continued to work in preparation for battles along the Somme making roads passable for armoured cars and troops. In September they carried out operations against the Hindenburg Line, through Bellicourt and beyond. Here work was done at night and one occasion a heavy ground mist made it extremely difficult to know what was going on and on approaching Bellicourt the battalion found itself among German infantry and were consequently drawn into the fighting. The Germans surrendered with much effort but in Bellicourt itself stiff opposition was encountered. The Battalion Lewis Gunners successfully out fought the German machine guns and the village was successfully taken. Godfrey returned to the UK for two weeks leave and on his return in October the battalion had moved to Roisel which turned out to be the last battle. The armistice was signed on 11 November and demobilisation began. Godfrey headed to England on 15 March 1919 returning to Australia on 8 May 1919.

He returned to labouring work living at Modewarre, married Doris Batson in 1925 they had four children. By 1931 Godfrey was a farmer, the family was living at Mt Moriac. The mid 1930s a final shift was made to farming at Winchelsea. Godfrey died at Geelong in 1953.

 

Anzac hatGeorge  FISHBURNModew - Fishburn G-1

Service No:       4033
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 29th Battalion, 10th Reinforcement

Born 1894, Numurkah
Son of Stephen and Louisa Fishburn from Port Fairy
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

George enlisted 23/08/1916 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 21/10/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A16 Port Melbourne
Served in France
Returned to Australia 5/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 3

George trained for 4 weeks at the 19th Depot Battalion, Geelong. Embarking from Melbourne per Port Melbourne on 21st October 1916 he arrived in Devonport on 28th December 1916. Inflicted with influenza George was admitted to hospital before proceeding overseas to France on 5th April, 1917. He was transferred to the 29th Battalion, 10th Reinforcements the following week. The only large battle in 1917 in which the 29th Battalion played a major role was Polygon Wood, fought in the Ypres sector in Belgium on 26 September.

Unlike some AIF battalions, the 29th had a relatively quiet time during the German Spring Offensive of 1918 as the 5th Division was in reserve for a lot of the time. When the Allies took to the offensive again, the 29th fought in a minor attack at Morlancourt on 29 July, and then in August and September took part in the great advance that followed the battle of Amiens. The 29th fought its last major action in September when the 5th and 3rd Australian Divisions, and two American divisions attacked the Hindenburg Line across the top of the 6-kilometre-long St Quentin Canal tunnel; the canal was a major obstacle in the German defensive scheme. The offensive of 1918, however, had strained the AIF almost to breaking point. On 12 October the 29th Battalion was disbanded to provide reinforcements for other 8th Brigade units. George was transferred to the 32nd Battalion. The 32nd was resting and retraining out of the line when the war ended on 11 November 1918. With the gradual repatriation of men to Australia, George was transferred to the 5th Divisional Train on 9th January 1919 before returning to Australia.

On return George settled back in Modewarre as a labourer. He married Sarah (Elizabeth) Parish in 1920 and they had three children. They moved to Mt. Moriac, George continuing to work as a labourer. He died on 25 December 1962.

 

 

Anzac hatWilliam Hugh HAMMOND

Service No:   2688
Rank:             Private
Unit:               21st Battalion, 6th Reinforcement

Born 6/3/1893, Modewarre
James and Ann Hammond from Bellarine
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

William enlisted 16/07/1916 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 5/10/1915 from Melbourne on RMS Moldavia
Served in France
Returned to Australia 8/4/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
– St Saviour’s Modewarre

William, a farmer, enlisted as a 22 year old man on 16 July 1915 at Melbourne. He initially trained at Seymour before being transferred to Bendigo attached to the 21st Battalion, 6th Reinforcements. He embarked for overseas service from Melbourne on 5 October 1915 aboard RMS Moldavia arriving in Egypt in November. Shortly after arriving he was admitted to hospital with a serious bout of mumps for four weeks.

William returned to his unit at Tel-el-Kebir before being transferred to the 6th Field Company Engineers, and proceeding overseas to France arriving on 27 March 1916. Their tasks were essential to the running of the war. Without the Engineers, other branches of the Allied Forces would have found it difficult to cross the muddy and shell-ravaged ground of the Western Front. Their responsibilities included constructing the lines of defence, temporary bridges, tunnels and trenches, observation posts, roads, railways, communication lines, buildings of all kinds, showers and bathing facilities, and other material and mechanical solutions to the problems associated with fighting in all theatres. William was remustered to ‘driver’ in May. At the end of June the unit followed the 7th Infantry Brigade to Romarin reclaiming trenches, drainage and renovating the duckboards under fire and resulting in casualties for the unit. They moved onto preparing the trenches at Messines Salient before marching to Albert in July where they were involved in the engagement at Poizeres sustaining many casualties during the operation. Two more tours of the Somme followed in August and November. William asked to be remustered back to Sapper.

In March 1917 a flying column of the Second Division (which the 6th Field Company Engineers were attached to) pursued the Germans to the Hindenburg Line. At Lagnicourt on 15 April 1917, it was struck by a powerful German counterattack, which it repelled. On 3 May 1917 the Division assaulted the Hindenburg Line in the Second Battle of Bullecourt, holding the breach thus gained against furious counterattacks. During the Third Battle of Ypres, it fought with great success at Menin Road in September and Broodeseinde in October.

In March 1918 the Second Division helped halt the German offensive in the Somme region and fought in the Battle of Hamel in July and the Battle of Amiens in August. In September 1918 it took Mont Saint Quentin. It fought on to the Hindenburg Line and beyond, becoming the last division to be withdrawn.

The unit returned to Australia in April 1919 and William returned to Portarlington farming before becoming a fisherman. William married Freda Hibbert in 1922. He died in 1970 at Portarlington.

 

 

 

Anzac hatCharles Thomas HARRIS

Service No:       356
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 23rd Battalion, B Company

Born 22/6/1894, Horsham
Son of Emma Thompson from Herne Hill, Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Charles enlisted 18/02/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 10/05/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A14 Euripides
Served in Gallipoli
Returned to Australia 29/0/1916
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 25

After arriving in Gallipoli on 30/8/1915 he was admitted to hospital sick on 5/11/1915 believed to be ‘influenza’ then he transferred to Malta seriously ill with ‘Entric Fever’. On 28/1/1916 he was transferred to the MS Suffolk and invalided Australia. He married Violet Frith in 1916. Once at home there seemed to be some confusion on his identity with a person located on French Island prison. His wife Violet claimed for his medals in 1920 (Geelong) then a pension in 1921, she was living in Port Albert.

 

Anzac hat KIAEdward Percival HENDYGeelong-College-Hendy-EP

Service No:       541
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 8th Light Horse Regiment, C Squadron

Born 2/7/1894, Moorpannyal, Geelong
Son of Ebenezer and Minnie Hendy from Newtown
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Edward enlisted 12/01/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 25/02/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A16 Star of Victoria
Served in Egypt, Gallipoli
Killed in Action 1/8/1915
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 27

Edward had previous 4 years military experience in the Geelong College Cadet Corps as well as serving with the 29th Light Horse, C Squadron. After five weeks of AIF military training he embarked from Melbourne with the 8th Light Horse Regiment, C Coy for Alexandria in Egypt. On 15 May 1915, the 8th Light Horse received orders to proceed to Gallipoli, and they embarked at Alexandria on 16 May 1915 per H.M.T. Menominee. It was thought the terrain at Gallipoli was unsuitable for mounted troops so the 8th Light Horse Brigade was deployed without their horses. All of their horses were left behind at Heliopolis under the care of one officer and 30 men. The 8th Light Horse landed at Kota Tepe (on Gallipoli) on the night of 21 May 1915, and took up positions at Walker’s Top. The 8th Light Horse were still at Walker’s Top when Edward was evacuated on 15 July 1915 to No. 1 A. Sty. Hospital at Mudros Island suffering from pleurisy. After treatment, and a week with at the Adm 24CC station he was able to return to his unit at Gallipoli on the 27 July 1915. Not long after his return the regiment was involved in the Charge at The Nek disaster which started with the bombardment of the Turkish positions by a destroyer steaming offshore. The bulk of the shells fell beyond their target and finished seven minutes early. Instead of charging at the end of the shelling the officers of the light horse held their men back until the appointed time for the attack arrived giving the Turks time to man their positions after seeking shelter from the bombardment. As the first wave of attack the 8th Light Horse Regiment were shot down by Turkish rifle and machine-gun fire. The second line, also from the 8th, scrambled over the dead and wounded of the first line to make their attack, and suffered the same fate. During the attack Edward received a gunshot wound to the right thigh which subsequently become quickly infected with gangrene. He was evacuated to the HS Delta where he died from his injury and gangrene. He was buried at sea between Murdos and Alexandria on 9 August 1915 by Rev H.S. Marshall.

 

Anzac hatRichard Frederick HUNT

Service No:       51376
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 2nd General (Victorian) Reinforcements

Born 28/10/1897, Waurn Ponds
Son of John and Mary Hunt from Pettavel
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Richard enlisted 1/02/1918 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 1/05/1918 from Sydney on HMAT A14 Euripides
Served in France
Returned to Australia 22/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Freshwater Creek
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Waurn Ponds
–  Anglesea
–  Barrabool
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 9

Richard was born at Waurn Ponds, one of six children to John Stead Hunt and Mary Ann Hunt (nee Mawson). He attended school at Paraparap State School. He is on many honour boards across the Surf Coast either from his involvement in those communities or because his father was a Shire Councillor. Richard, a Pettavel farmer enlisted in Geelong for what turned out to be the last year of the war at the age of 20 years 3 months. Richard had some prior military training and was ranked Corporal in the Trainees carrying a referral to the training camp as to his ability. He trained at the Broadmeadows Camp with the 2nd General Service Reinforcements before the unit embarked overseas from Sydney via New York, disembarking at Liverpool on 2 July 1918. A transgression of being in the crew’s quarters during the journey was admonished on arrival in New York. Arriving in Liverpool he marched into the 5th Training Battalion, England and the next day was admitted to Hurdcott Hospital with the mumps. The following month he was back in hospital with tonsillitis. On discharge from hospital 21 August he marched back into the 5th Training Battalion, Fovant. In September Richard proceeded overseas to France, transferring in to the Australian Infantry Base Depot (AIBD) on arrival. On 26 September he was taken on strength to the 22nd Battalion which took part in the last action fought by the AIF on the Western Front, the battle of Montbrehain / Beaurevoir Line, in October 1918. The Beaurevoir Line was the last of a series of German defensive lines known collectively by the Allies as the Hindenburg Line. It was approximately eight kilometres to the rear of the main Hindenburg Line and consisted of thick barbed wire entanglements and well-sited machine and anti-tank gun bunkers. The bulk of the trenches, however, were only partly dug. The original attack on the Hindenburg Line launched on 29 September had been intended to smash right through the Beaurevior Line as well, but had not succeeded in this objective. Along with the 46th British Division, the 2nd Australian Division was ordered to breakthrough the Beaurevoir Line on 3 October 1918. The Australians were to seize the village of Beaurevoir, and the British Montbrehain. The Australian attack was a success, but was stopped short of the village due to insecure flanks. The British captured Montbrehain, but were unable to retain it. After an ill-fated attempt to capture Beaurevoir on 4 October, the 6th Australian Brigade was launched against Montbrehain the next morning. The village was secure by the end of the day, but came at the expense 430 casualties – a cost regarded as excessively high for such a limited objective. At 11 am on 11 November 1918 the guns on the Western Front fell silent. After three weeks leave in UK, Richard re-joined his unit on 23 March 1919 for a brief time before they marched out to the UK on 30 May disembarking at Southampton the next day. On 22 July 1919 Richard left England for return to Australia per H.T. “Ulysses” arriving in Melbourne on 2 September 1919. He was discharged three weeks later.

Richard proceeded back to farm at Moriac. In 1921 he became seriously ill. Since his return from Active Service he had frequently complained of headache and pains which he had said were the result of gas. The cause of death was found to be malignant growths as a result of gas received in the war. During surgery just prior to his death it was discovered he had several pellets in his stomach. It appears at no time during the war did he seek medical attention for either of these injuries. He died at ‘Koonwarra’ Private Hospital, Armadale in 1922 then buried at Mt. Moriac cemetery.

 

 

Anzac hatRoy Vivian Leslie HUNTER

Service No:       2490
Rank:                Driver
Unit:                 2nd Field Company Engineers, Reinforcement 12

Born 1894, Corio
Son of Thomas and Catherine Hunter from Winchelsea
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a tram conductor

Roy enlisted 10/07/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 11/12/1915 from Sydney on RMS Mooltan
Served in France
Returned to Australia 1/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Wurdale
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 13

On enlistment Roy was given the rank of Driver in the 12th Reinforcement of the 2nd Field Company Engineers. Engineers, also known as sappers, were essential to the running of the war. Without them, other branches of the Allied Forces would have found it difficult to cross the muddy and shell-ravaged ground of the Western Front. Their responsibilities included constructing the lines of defence, temporary bridges, tunnels and trenches, observation posts, roads, railways, communication lines, buildings of all kinds, showers and bathing facilities, and other material and mechanical solutions to the problems associated with fighting in all theatres. They embarked from Sydney on board the RMS Mooltan on 11 December 1915 and disembarked at Suez a month later. Roy had minor surgery on 14 February 1916 and was transferred to the 12th Field Company Engineers before joining them at Tel el Kebir in April. He left from Alexandria and disembarked at Marseilles on 11 May. During June to August he entered hospital a number of times unwell eventually being transferred to England with Lotar Pneumonia in November. After recovering he stayed in England on furlough and then was briefly attached to Depot at Pelham Downs before returning to France in March 1917. By this stage the unit was located in Abbeville supporting the troops well behind the front line. He stayed with his unit until February 1918 when he was admitted to hospital again, then re-joining his unit in May. He was on leave in Paris when the armistice was signed. He re-joined his unit and in February 1919 took leave to the UK and again found himself sick. He returned to Australia per H.T. Frankfurt disembarking 20 August 1919.

 

Anzac hatGeorge Thomas HUNTER

Service No:       260
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 13th Light Horse Regiment, B Squadron

Born 1886, Winchelsea
Son of Thomas and Catherine Hunter from Winchelsea
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a horse breaker

George enlisted 5/01/1915 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 28/05/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A34 Persic
Served in Cairo
Returned to Australia 11/4/1916
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 17

After enlisting on 5 January 1915, George was assigned to the 13th Light Horse Regiment at Broadmeadows training camp on 29 March 1915. Its regimental number quickly led to it becoming known as the “Devil’s Own” regiment. It left Australia on 28 May and disembarked in Egypt on 29 June 1915. George suffered a number of illness – gallstone colic, eye trouble, neurasthenia, flat feet and epilepsy. These kept him from shipping out with the unit to Gallipoli. During March 1916 he suffered hammer toes of both feet and subsequently on 11 April he was invalided back to Australia per ‘Runic’ from Suez for discharge.

 

Anzac hatAlbert  JACKAA03408

Service No:       465
Rank:                Captain
Unit:                 14th Battalion, D Company

Born 1893, Modewarre
Son of Nathanial and Mary Jacka from Wedderburn
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Albert enlisted 18/09/1914 at Melbourne as a single man
He embarked for overseas 22/12/1914 from Melbourne on HMAT A38 Ulysses
Served in Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front
He was decorated with the Victoria Cross and the Military Medal & BAR
Returned to Australia 28/10/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 33

Albert Jacka joined the AIF in September 1914 as 21-year old private and landed on Gallipoli on 25 April 1925. A few weeks later, on 19 May, he helped repel a Turkish assault at Courtney’s Post. During the action he attacked a group of the enemy with his rifle and bayonet and recaptured the position. For this he became the first Australian to win the Victoria Cross in the First World War. Next year in France, as an officer at the battle for Pozières, he performed an equally bold action for which he was awarded the Military Cross. Although seriously wounded, his attack on the enemy was described by the official war historian as “the most dramatic and effective act of individual audacity in the history of the AIF”. At Bullecourt in April 1917 he won a bar to his MC for further brave individual work. Jacka became known throughout the AIF for his bravery. His 14th Battalion was called “Jacka’s Mob”. He was courageous, straightforward and unpretentious. He was wounded again near Messines in July 1917 and badly gassed in May 1918.

In 1919 Albert Jacka came home to Australia and was greeted by a civic reception. He was most renowned in Victoria where he had always lived. He went into business and did well until the Depression. He became mayor of St Kilda. Even his early death in 1932 did not diminish his status among former diggers for whom his grave site became a place of annual pilgrimage: Eight VC winners were his pallbearers. …….. read more>

 

Anzac hatWilliam  KELLY

Service No:       3306
Rank:                Driver
Unit:                 3rd Pioneer Battalion, Reinforcement 7

Born 1894, Buckley
Son of William and Norah Kelly from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

William enlisted 28/05/1917 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 4/08/1917 from Melbourne on HMAT A32 Themistocles
Served in Western Front
Returned to Australia 9/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 6

William entered the recruitment depot at Broadmeadows on 31 June 1917 training for deployment overseas. With his occupation prior to enlistment as a farmer he was able to provide a range of skills that would support a Pioneer Battalion. He could in perform construction tasks in the forward area not requiring the special equipment of engineers such as constructing trenches and dugouts or on occasion construction of bridges. William as attached to the 3rd Pioneer Battalion, 7th Reinforcements at Seymour on 9 July 1917. They embarked for overseas from Melbourne per HMAT Themistocles on 4 August disembarking at Glasgow on 2 October and transported to England by train. The following month William was transferred to the Artillery Details at Sutton Veny and mustered as Gunner with the Reserve Brigade Australia Artillery, Heytesbury. This brigade proceeded oversees to France on 18 January 1918. He was transferred to the 3rd Army Brigade Australian Field Artillery a few days later and appointed Driver the following month. William was shot in the thigh on 31 May and invalided back to the UK on 6 June. Once recovered he was stationed at Heytesbury once again where in September he was absent from Harness Cleaning Parade and awarded the forfeiture of 7 days’ pay! The following month on 14 October 1918 he rejoined his unit in France staying there until 6 May when he marched into England returning to Australia per “Perry Ludwig” 5 September 1919.

 

Anzac hatJohn Thomas LARCOMBEModde - Larcombe DA17351

Service No:       32242
Rank:                Driver
Unit:                 Field Artillery Brigade 2, Reinforcement 24

Born 1884, Geelong
Son of John and Hannah Larcombe from Mt Moriac
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

John enlisted 12/09/1916 at Geelong as a single man
He embarked for overseas 14/02/1917 from Melbourne on RMS Osterley
Served in France
Returned to Australia 6/9/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Anglesea
–  Barrabool
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 5

John enlisted in the AIF in September 1916 with the rank of ‘Gunner’ training with the 24th Battalion, 2nd Field Artillery Reinforcements at Maribyrnong. He embarked from Melbourne with the rank of ‘Driver’ and disembarked in Plymouth, England on 11 April 1917 attached to the Reserve Brigade Australia Artillery at Larkhill. John was promoted to Bombardier for two months to complete establishment of the unit. He proceeded overseas to France from Southampton on 3 November 1917 marching into Rouelles, France, then the next day to the Australian General Base Depot. On 24 November he was taken on strength to the 1st Division Ammunition Column and posted to No. 1 section. The First Division rejoined the Australian Corps in the Somme region in 1918 in time to participate in the Battle of Amiens and fought on to the Hindenburg Line. When the enemy launched its second phase of the spring offensive, the Division was rushed from the Somme to help plug the gap and was involved in (April) The Battle of Hazebrouck in which the Division fought the defence of Nieppe Forest; (May/June) Merris – 1st Australian Division, in a series of small operations, recovered ground lost in the German offensive; (August) The Battle of Albert in which the Division captured Chuignes, as part of the Second Battles of the Somme1918, then they went on to capture Lihons. The Division’s last battle was in September – The Battle of Epehy, one of the Battles of the Hindenburg Line. The week before Armistice was declared John went on leave to the UK re-joining the unit at the end of November. He stayed five months for the clean up before returning to England where he attended a school on Stock Breeding. He returned to Australia per “Euripides” disembarking at Melbourne on 20 October 1919.

John returned to farming at Mount Moriac and married his cousin Hannah in 1921. They continued to live and farm at Mount Moriac raising their two sons until 1937 when the family moved to Modewarre and John continued the family farming tradition. Like his father and grandfather John became a Barrabool councillor serving from 1939 until 1952. He died on 4 May 1952 at Mount Moriac.

 

 

WWI-Pith_helmet_khakiThomas Lawson LAWRENCE

Rank:            Lieutenant
Unit:             East African Unit, British Army

 

Born 1/1/1891, Fitzroy
Son of George and Ellen Lawrence from Hawthorn
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a Clergy

Thomas enlisted in 1917 at East Africa as a single man
Served in German East Africa
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
– St Saviour’s Modewarre

Rev Thomas Lawrence, was born in Fitzroy and educated at Ridley (theological and university) College, Melbourne. On 11 June 1915 he was ordained by Bishop Thomas in St. Peter’s Cathedral Adelaide while he was curate of St. Luke’s, Whitmore Square, Adelaide. In October he was accepted for service in Uganda under the auspices of the Adelaide Church of England Missionary Society after many years wishing to become a missionary. He left in November taking charge of a school that was attended by the sons of native chiefs.

In 1917 he was appointed Lieutenant in a British regiment operating in German East Africa, in command of the Labour Detachment. His knowledge of the ways and languages of certain of the tribes was such that the military authorities sought his assistance in the organization and control of natives for transport purposes on active service.

He returned home on furlough from active service in “German” East Africa in August 1919 and was prominent on the speaking circuit about his time in Uganda. The following year he was curate at St. Columb’s Church, Hawthorn before being inducted on 6 February 1921as vicar of the churches at Barrabool (Ceres) and Modewarre. He married Verlie Elliot the following night in Melbourne. During his time in the area he participated in community life and was President of the Ceres tennis club and Ceres Blue ribbon Society.

In 1924 Thomas and Verlie returned to Uganda then spent two years in Tanganyika, formerly German East Africa. He returned home in 1927 wrote books and presented at numerous speaking engagements in Australia and abroad. Thomas died at Kew in 1941.

 

 

 

Anzac hatClarence Percy MATTHEWS

Service No:       2702
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 29th Battalion, 5th Reinforcement

Born 1893, Modewarre
Son of Hugh and Sophia Matthews from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Clarence enlisted 5/02/1916 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 14/03/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A68 Anchises
Served in France
Returned to Australia 5/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 11

Clarence and his brother Thomas both signed up on the 5 February 1916 to join the AIF. They both entered the training depot in Geelong before being assigned to the 29th Battalion, 5th Reinforcements with the rank of Private. Together they embarked from Melbourne on board the HMAT Anchises on 14 March 1916 arriving at Suez a month later. Within a few days Clarence had dysentery he recovered quickly and re-joined his unit. The 29th Battalion disembarked at Marselles on 29 June 1916 in preparation for its first major battle at Fromelles on 19 July 1916. The nature of this battle was summed up by one 29th soldier: “the novelty of being a soldier wore off in about five seconds…it was like a bloody butcher’s shop.” Although it still spent periods in the front line, the 29th played no major offensive role for the rest of the year. With an intense winter Clarence was one of many who developed ‘trench feet’ and was transferred to the Anzac CR station in December. Four weeks later he re-joined the 29th Battalion in the field. In early 1917, the German Army withdrew to the Hindenburg Line, allowing the British front to be advanced. The Germans, however, made selected stands to delay this advance and the 28th Battalion was involved in defeating a counter-attack at Beaumetz on 23 March. The battalion subsequently missed the heavy fighting to breach the Hindenburg Line during the second battle of Bullecourt as the 8th Brigade was deployed to protect the Division’s flank. The only large battle in 1917 in which the 29th Battalion played a major role was Polygon Wood, fought in the Ypres sector in Belgium on 26 September. It was during one of the minor battles that Clarence was wounded in action on 13 October 1917. He suffered a gun shot wound to the right shoulder and was hospitalized for a month. In April 1918 an abscess on his Axillary glands caused him to be transferred to England for treatment. He spent some time at the Training Brigade at Longbridge Deverill before proceeding back to France on 12 September as the battalion was taking part in the great advance that followed the battle of Amiens. The 29th fought its last major action in September when the 5th and 3rd Australian Divisions, and two American divisions attacked the Hindenburg Line across the top of the 6 kilometre long St Quentin Canal tunnel; the canal was a major obstacle in the German defensive scheme. The offensive of 1918, however, had strained the AIF almost to breaking point. On 12 October the 29th Battalion was disbanded to provide reinforcements for other 8th Brigade units and Clarence was transferred to the 5th Army Medical Corps. On 30 April 1919 he marched out to England for embarkation back to Australia.

 

Anzac hatJohn William MATTHEWS

Service No:       3325
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 3rd Pioneer Battalion, Reinforcement 7

Born 1888, Geelong
Son of William and Julia Matthews from Fyansford
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a contractor

John enlisted 25/07/1917 at Melbourne as a married man
He embarked for overseas 4/08/1917 from Melbourne on HMAT A32 Themistocles
Served in Western Front
Returned to Australia 8/2/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 15

John started training at the Broadmeadows Recruitment Depot before being transferred to the 3rd Pioneer Battalion, 7th Reinforcements at Seymour with William Kelly on 9 July 1917. He embarked from Melbourne for overseas on 4 August 1917 disembarking in Glasgow on 2 October and transported by train to England. On 21 January 1918 while at the Training Unit Sutton Veny, John sought medical treatment for his feet – the arches of both feet were quite gone. He was transferred to the No 2 Com Depot Weymouth in July and returned to Australia per HT Somali on 10 December 1918. Subsequently in February 1919 he was recommended for discharge as permanently unfit – unable to do route marches since the cold weather

 

Anzac hatStanley Edgar MATTHEWSModde-Mathews SE H03877

Service No:       8234
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 19th Army Service Corps, Field Bakery Section

Born 16/6/1894, Modewarre
Son of James and Sarah Matthews from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a baker

Stanley enlisted 8/07/1915 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 30/11/1915 from Sydney on HMAT A23 Suffolk
Served in France
Returned to Australia 3/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 19

Stanley enlisted for service in the AIF on 31 August 1915 at Seymour. He was posted to 19th Army Service Corps as a baker.  Prior to enlisting Stanley was employed as a baker. He embarked from Australia on 30 November 1915 in HMAT Suffolk disembarking in Alexandria in February. After a couple of days in hospital because of abdominal pains Stanley embarked from Alexandria on 17 March, arriving in Marseilles on 23 March. Just after arrival in France he was sent to the 30th General Hospital because of postnasal catarrh then invalided back to England. He spent two months at the training depot, Horseferry Road, London before proceeding back overseas to France on 1 September 1916. Once arriving in Etaples he marched out to Rouen to the 5th Field Bakery. Except for another stay in hospital he stayed with the 5th Field Bakery for the rest of the war. Stanley left France for England on 21 February 1919 where he spent four months, before embarking for Australia aboard the ship Zealandic on 3 July with his wife Kathleen (nee Langran). He disembarked in Sydney on 23 August and was discharged from the AIF on 17 October 1919.

 

Anzac hatThomas Hamilton MATTHEWS

Service No:       2712
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 29th Battalion, 5th Reinforcement

Born 1884, Modewarre
Son of Hugh and Sophia Matthews from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Thomas enlisted 5/02/1916 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 14/03/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A68 Anchises
Served in France
Returned to Australia 20/6/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 2

Thomas and his brother Clarence both signed up on the 5 February 1916 to join the AIF. They both entered the training depot in Geelong before being assigned to the 29th Battalion, 5th Reinforcements with the rank of Private. Together they embarked from Melbourne on board the HMAT Anchises on 14 March 1916 arriving at Suez a month later. He embarked from Alexandria on 21 June and disembarked at Marselles on 29 June 1916 just before the first major battle for the 29th Battalion, the battle at Fromelles on 19 July 1916. Directed by a strong German position the attack was intended primarily to be a feint hoping to draw German troops away from the Somme offensive being pursued further south. Ill planning and implementation deprived the attack of any surprise on the well-entrenched defenders. When the Australian troops attacked they suffered heavily at the hands of the German machine gunners. While some German trenches were captured, with a lack of flanking support and German counter attacks they were forced to withdraw. The Germans realised it was a feint so it had no impact on the Somme offensive. Thomas’ service record does not state whathappened to him but he re-joined the battalion in September. On 11 February 1917 he was attached to the 5th Sanitary Section for duty and promoted to 2/Corporal in March. He stayed with them until 24 April 1919 when he marched to England out of France before returning to Australia per ‘Konig Frederick August’ disembarking Melbourne on 6 August 1919.

 

Anzac hat KIAAllan Ernest MATTHEWS

Service No:       3326
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 3rd Pioneer Battalion, Reinforcement 7

Born 1894, Modewarre
Son of William and Julia Matthews from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a contractor

Allan enlisted 28/05/1917 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 4/08/1917 from Melbourne on HMAT A32 Themistocles
Served in Western Front
Died as a result of disease 25/10/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 22

After embarking from Melbourne Allan disembarked at Glasgow, Scotland on 2 October 1917 marching into the Pioneer Training Battalion at Sutton Veny on 3 October 1917 where he stayed for four months. He proceeded overseas to France, 12 February 1918; marched into Australian Intermediate Base Depot, Le Havre, 13 February 1918 joining the 3rd Pioneer Battalion on 19th February 1918. Allan fought at many of the greater battles, was at Amiens, and at many other important incidents on the Western Front. On 21 October 1918 he was admitted to No 10 Australian Field Ambulance, subsequently transferred to No 3 Australian General Hospital, Abbeville, the same day with influenza. He died on 25 October 1918 from broncho pneumonia due to exposure.

 

Anzac hatWilliam  McADAMModew - McAdam-2

Service No:       20
Rank:                Corporal
Unit:                 8th Battalion, Headquarters

Born 1882, Ceres
Son of Walter and Sarah McAdam from Ceres
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

William enlisted 18/08/1914 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 19/10/1914 from Melbourne on HMAT A24 Benalla
Served in France
Returned to Australia 8/10/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Barrabool
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 29

William a 32 year old farmer from Modewarre joined the AIF in 1914 with 5 years’ experience in the Royal Navy. He joined the 8th Battalion AIF which was among the first infantry units raised for the AIF during the First World War. Like the 5th, 6th and 7th Battalions, it was recruited from Victoria and, together with these battalions, formed the 2nd Brigade. The battalion was raised from rural Victoria by Lieutenant Colonel William Bolton within a fortnight of the declaration of war in August 1914 and embarked just two months later. After a brief stop in Albany, Western Australia, the battalion proceeded to Egypt, arriving on 2 December. It later took part in the ANZAC landing on 25 April 1915, as part of the second wave. Ten days after the landing, the 2nd Brigade was transferred from Anzac to Cape Helles to help in the attack on the village of Krithia. The attack captured little ground but cost the brigade almost a third of its strength. The Victorian battalions returned to Anzac to help defend the beachhead, and in August the 2nd Brigade fought at the battle of Lone Pine. On 26 November William was promoted to Lance Corporal. The battalion served at Anzac until the evacuation in December. Following Gallipoli the brigade returned to Egypt where they once again took part in the defense of the Suez Canal before embarking for France in March 1916. On 12 March 1916 William was transferred to the 2nd Machine Gun Company (2 MG Coy) and allocated to the 2nd Brigade of the First Division, disembarking in France on 30 March 1916. They took up positions in the trenches of the Western Front but William was transferred to hospital with illness re-joining his unit on 10 November 1916. Celluliti of leg caused him to be admitted to hospital once again then a stay at the D.R.S (Divisional Rest Station). He had recovered from his illness and arrived in Camiers, France re-joining unit in the field on 7 October 1917 during the Battle of Passchendaele (also the Third Battle of Ypres). An attack of scabies in January 1918 withdrew him from his tasks for a short time. In March he attended Corps Gas School for a week. His unit was involved in the Spring Offensive of 1918 and at the start of the campaign he was promoted to temporary Sergeant. At the end of this offensive in October 1918 Edgar embarked for Australia.

After the war William returned home to live as a labourer in Ceres. He died in 1954 aged 72.

 

Anzac hat KIAHenry William PURNELLGeelong-College-Purnell

Service No:       871
Rank:                Gunner
Unit:                 13th Light Horse Regiment, 2nd Reinforcement

Born 20/11/1893, Geelong
Son of Robert and Helen Purnell from Geelong
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Henry enlisted 22/06/1915 at Melbourne as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 10/09/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A57 Malakuta
Served in Gallipoli, Egypt, France
He was decorated with the Military Medal
Killed in Action 29/5/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 8

After training at Broadmeadows, Harry, son of Robert, Mayor of Geelong (1923-24); embarked from Melbourne with the 13th Australian Light Horse Regiment, AIF, 2nd Reinforcement. The 13th Light Horse Regiment was formed at Broadmeadows in Victoria in March 1915; it was the third light horse regiment to have been raised in that state. Its regimental number quickly led to it becoming known as the “Devil’s Own” regiment. It left Australia and disembarked in Egypt before heading to Gallipoli. As mounted troops, the Light Horse was considered to be unsuitable for work in Gallipoli so they volunteered to operate as infantry being deployed on primarily defensive activities around the Lone Pine trenches throughout the stay at Gallipoli. The 13th Light Horse Regiment left the peninsula on 20 December 1915. After the return to Egypt, the 13th Light Horse Regiment moved to the Suez Canal taking part in its defense. The work was hot and monotonous. On 10 March 1916 the 13th Light Horse Regiment was broken up with a squadron allotted per division. Harry was taken on strength from the 13th Light Horse to the 2nd Divisional Ammunition Column who were at the Zeitoun training camp in Cairo. The division left for France, taking over part of the sector around Armentieres. On 27 July 1916, it relieved the First Division at Pozieres and captured the Pozieres Heights at great cost. Harry moved to the 5th Field Artillery Battalion on the 16th August 1916 who were in battle at Armentières. He was promoted to bomardier on 17th March 1917 then to corporal the following month. He was re-allotted from 4th Training Battalion to 12th Training Battalion as reinforcements for 47th Battalion. At the end of the year he was appointed temporary sergeant replacing sergeant who had been KIA subsequently reverting to substantive rank of corporal on evacuating sick in March 1918. Moving back to the 5th Field Artillery Battalion on 2nd April 1918 he asked that he revert to rank of gunner. By mid-April a renewed German push for Amiens was evident and the entire 5th Division was put into the line astride the Somme.

During the battle here Harry earned his Military Medal – ‘For gallantry and devotion to duty at RIBEMONT on 16th May, 1918. Gunner PURNELL with two others endeavoured at great personal risk to himself, to put out blazing ammunition exploding charges and primers in a gun pit. The heat and fumes drove him back repeatedly but each time he returned and continued his efforts, at one time rolling clear of the conflagration, shells which had become dangerously hot. finding that it was impossible to put out the fire, he with two others went into the blaze again and manhandled the gun clear of the fire. This man’s courage undoubtedly was of great assistance in preventing the destruction of the Howitzer.’ Source: ‘Commonwealth Gazette’ No. 23, 12 February 1919

Two weeks later Harry was killed in action on 29th May, 1918. He was buried at the Frenchencourt Communal Cemetery – Frechencourt is a village in the Somme department of France and is approximately 12 kilometres north-east of Amiens. The communal cemetery was used by Commonwealth troops from April to August 1918 and contains 57 burials of the First World War. On 7th October 1918 Harry was awarded the Military Medal.

 

 

Anzac hatFrancis Greenwood ROBINSON

Service No:       2985
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 29th Battalion, 6th Reinforcement

Born 1896, Yorkshire, England
Son of Elizabeth Robinson from Spring Bank, Enland
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a labourer

Francis enlisted 31/12/1915 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 4/04/1916 from Melbourne on HMAT A14 Euripides
Served in France
Discharged in London 15/04/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
– Modewarre
– Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
– Barrabool
– Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 28

Francis was discharged in London following the demobilisation of the AIF. He inteded to live in his hometown at 212 Berverley Road, Hull, Yorkshire. Francis married Leah and they had one child. He died at Lancashire in 1974.

 

Anzac hatEdgar Robert SIMPSON

Service No:       2893
Rank:                Gunner
Unit:                 5th Battalion, 9th Reinforcement

Born 1892, Ocean Grove
Son of Robert and Mary Simpson from Newport
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Edgar enlisted 22/06/1915 at Melbourne as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 10/09/1915 from Melbourne on HMAT A16 Star of Victoria
Served in Egypt, France
Returned to Australia 11/1/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
– Modewarre
– Barrabool
– Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
– Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 26

In 1915, Edgar married Gladys Arnold between 22nd June (enlisted as a single man) and 10 September 1915 when Edgar embarked for active service abroad. On 7 January 1916 he was taken on strength to the 5th Battalion, in El-el-Kebir then transferred to 57th Battalion before transferring to the 13th Field Artillery Battery. The unit embarked on the “Tunisian” from Alexandria on 16th June 1916, disembarking at Marseilles a week later. While in the field Edgar was transferred to the 25th Field Artillery (Howitzer) Brigade on 9th July where the 5th Division was taking over part of the “nursery” sector near Armentieres. There it became involved in the disastrous attack at Fromelles in July. In October the unit joined the First, Second and Fourth Divisions on the Somme around Flers. On 24 January 1917 Edgar was transferred to the 13th Field Artillery Brigade, still part of the 5th Division Artillery. In March 1917 a flying column of the Fifth Division pursued of the Germans to the Hindenburg Line, capturing Bapaume. In May the Division relieved the First Division in the Second Battle of Bullecourt, holding the breach thus gained against furious counterattacks. In September it managed to turn an allied defeat into a major victory at the Battle of Polygon Wood. At the end of this battle Edgar was admitted to hospital with Gastritis, and transferred to England. He left England on 11 January 1918 for Australia with Tachycardia being discharged medically unfit with the disability Trachycardia on 18 April 1918.

He returned home to Gladys living in Preston. He became a wool sorter. In Geelong 1920 their daughter was born. The family had moved to San Remo by 1924 where Edgar was once again a farmer. Edgar continued to farm and live in the Wonthaggi area. A couple more children added to the family. Edgar died here in 1970.

 

Anzac hatAngus James STEWARTModew - Stewart J-1

Service No:       3396
Rank:                Private
Unit:                 37th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement

Born 1898, Deneliquin, NSW
Son of Angus and Amy Stewart from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a farmer

Angus enlisted 30/10/1917 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 22/12/1917 from Melbourne on HMAT A38 Ulysses
Served in France
Returned to Australia 22/7/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
– Modewarre
– St Saviour’s Modewarre
– Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 14

At the end of 1917 Angus known as ‘Jim’ embarked from Melbourne for overseas. In February 1918 he marched into the 10th Training Battalion at Sutton Mandeville waiting to proceed overseas to France. On 22nd May his unit landed in France marching into the A.I.B.D (Australian Divisional Base Depot) at Roulles. A few days later he was transferred to the 37th Battalion who were battling the German Spring third offensive around Aisne. The Allies launched their own offensive on 8 August 1918, but the 37th Battalion was in reserve on this day and was not ordered into action. It was involved, however, in an ill-conceived attack that failed to capture the village of Proyart on 10 August. The battalion nevertheless continued to play an active role throughout August and early September in the 3rd Division’s advance along the Somme Valley. Despite its success, this advance sapped the strength of the AIF. In September 1918 several battalions were ordered to disband to provide reinforcements for others. The 37th was one such battalion. Jim transferred to the 38th Battalion on 12th October 1918 which was participating in its last major action of the war as part of the Australian-American operation that breached the formidable defences of the Hindenburg Line along the St Quentin Canal. It was disbanded in April 1919 at the same time Jim had been battling dermatitis and scabies so he was attached to the Australian Base Division then to 35th Battalion before leaving for England on 6.6.19 to return to Australia. While waiting embarkation home Jim forfeited 7 days’ pay for smoking after being ordered not to do so! He boarded the HMAT Ulysses on 22nd July 1919 and was discharged on 25th September 1919.

Once home Jim returned to the family dairy farm ‘Deepdene’ at Birregurra. He lived and worked there for a while before becoming a labourer living at Modewarre by 1924. He married Margaret Prowse 1935 in NSW. The following year he was living in Buckley working as a labourer. Here they stayed raising their two children,

 

Anzac hatJohn Cecil WALLIS

Service No:       32237
Rank:                Gunner
Unit:                 Field Artillery Brigade 2, Reinforcement 24

Born 24/10/1892, Jeparat
Son of John and Ella Wallis from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a soldier (engineer)

John enlisted 10/10/1916 at Queenscliff as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 14/02/1917 from Melbourne on RMS Osterley
Served in England, France
Returned to Australia 20/12/1918
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 10

After arriving in England from Australia on 11th April 1917, John known as Jack, suffered a long illness with Epistascis (nose bleeds) eventually joining his unit on 25th May 1917. He was quickly promoted during this time in England: in September promoted to ER (Extra Regimental) Corporal then to ER Sergeant. His unit proceed overseas arriving in Rouelles, France on 20th February 1918. He reverted back to his substantive rank of Gunner on embarkation and was attached to the 12th Army Brigade of Australian Field Artillery (AFA) shortly after arriving in France. In March near Amiens the 4th Brigade of the 4th Division were in battle. Another two brigades of the Australian 4th Division, 12th and 13th, are rushed to a new crises near Albert. Due to a mistake, the British Division protecting Albert was withdrawn. After a 27 kilometre march through the night they reached villages north west of Albert only to hear that familiar places such as Pozières, Thiepval and Mouquet Farm and Albert had been captured. The British 1st Cavalry Division manages to halt the German advance in front of the town of Hamel and Villers-Bretonneux, just 16 kilometres east of the strategic town of Amiens. Its vital road and rail junctions were a major objective of the Germans. During these battles Sergeant Stanley Robert McDougall, 47th Battalion, 12th Brigade, 4th Division was awarded the Victoria Cross. In April the Battle of Dernancourt involved the Australian 12th and 13th Brigades ( 4th Division ) on the railway embankment and cuttings in Dernancourt, just south of Albert . The under strength Australian Brigades (numbering about 4,000 ) faced 4 German Divisions totalling about 25,000. Situated on the western side of the Ancre River valley, the Australians formed a defensive line at the railway embankment, from which they held back German attacks. The Australian 48th Battalion soon found itself outflanked by German to its rear. The 48th was ordered to hold at all costs but by midday was facing annihilation and the senior officer ordered a withdrawal. Much like the actions at Bullecourt the previous year, the Australian battalion withdrew successfully and in order. This action costs 12th and 13th Brigades ( 4th Division ) 1,100 casualties. On 25th May Jack was transferred to musketry school for a week. Rejoining the unit in the Somme region. On 22nd August he was invalided to England after being gassed by a shell a few days earlier. A decision was made in December that Jack should return home to Australia.

Jack returned to the farm ‘Corrembe’ at Modewarre. By 1924 he and his mother were living in Geelong, Jack was working as a traveller/salesman. He married Ella Meagher in 1927 and they had two children. In the mid 1930’s the family had moved to Mildura where George was an inspector of lands a role he continued when they moved to Horsham then back to Geelong by 1949. Jack died in Geelong on 2nd May 1972.

 

Anzac hatNorman Lyle WOODS

Service No:       2885
Rank:                Sergeant
Unit:                 21st Battalion, 6th Reinforcement

Born 1896, Modewarre
Son of George and Isabella Woods from Modewarre
His occupation prior to enlistment was as a printer

Norman enlisted 15/07/1915 at Geelong as a Single man
He embarked for overseas 5/10/1915 from Melbourne on RMS Moldavia
Served in France
Returned to Australia 27/10/1919
His name is listed on the following memorials / honour boards:
–  Modewarre
–  Barrabool & Sth Barwon Shire
–  Barrabool
–  St Saviour’s Modewarre
–  Modewarre Avenue of Honour – Tree No 4

After training Norman was assigned to the 21st Battalion, 6th Reinforcements. The 21st Battalion was raised, as part of the 6th Brigade, at Broadmeadows in February 1915. Its recruits hailed from all over the state. They embarked in October 1915 arriving in France on 7th January 1916. In April, it was the first Australian battalion to commence active operations on the Western Front. During the battle of Pozières it was engaged mainly on carrying duties, but suffered its heaviest casualties of the war during the fighting around Mouquet Farm. Norman was promoted to Corporal and temporary Sergeant Major in the latter part of the year. After a brief hospital stay in February 1917 Norman re-joined his unit only to be back in hospital seriously ill with Pyrexia of unknown origin (PUO) on 17th April 1917 and was transferred back to England for treatment. He joined a training unit after his discharge from hospital in June until November 22nd when he re-joined his unit in France. The unit was involved in the defensive operations against the German Somme ‘Spring Offensive’ from 21 March to 5 April 1918. An inflammation of connective tissue in his right toe caused him to invalided back to hospital in England for a month. He stayed attached to a Training Brigade in England until his return to Australia in October 1919.

Norman married Emily Saunders in 1920. They initially lived in Geelong where Norman worked as a railway employee before moving to Daylesford working for the railways during the 1930’s. They moved to Bentleigh just before Norman enlisted in the Australian Army in 1942. He was discharged in 1945 with the rank of Captain posted to the 1 Australian Infantry Training Battalion. After WW2 Norman joined the public service and continued to live with Emily in Bentleigh. He died in 1988.

 

 

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