Valentine Francis BEAZLEY

BEAZLEY, Valentine Francis

Service Number: 1605
Enlisted: 27 September 1915, Cootamundra, NSW
Last Rank: Driver
Last Unit: 10th Field Artillery Brigade
Born: Nubba Siding, New South Wales, Australia, 1894
Home Town: Murrumburrah, Harden, New South Wales
Schooling: Unknown
Occupation: Labourer
Died: Killed in Action, France, 9 August 1918
Cemetery: Adelaide Cemetery Villers-Bretonneux, France
Plot III, Row S, Grave 8, Adelaide Cemetery, Villers-Bretonneux, Picardie, France
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Wallendbeen War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

27 Sep 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, 1605, 7th Light Horse Regiment, Cootamundra, NSW
18 Nov 1915: Involvement Private, 1605, 7th Light Horse Regiment, --- :embarkation_roll: roll_number: '2' embarkation_place: Sydney embarkation_ship: HMAT Persic embarkation_ship_number: A34 public_note: ''
18 Nov 1915: Embarked Private, 1605, 7th Light Horse Regiment, HMAT Persic, Sydney
9 Aug 1918: Involvement Driver, 1605, 10th Field Artillery Brigade , --- :awm_ww1_roll_of_honour_import: awm_service_number: 1605 awm_unit: 10th Australian Field Artillery Brigade awm_rank: Driver awm_died_date: 1918-08-09

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Biography contributed by Nuriootpa High School

Natural British Subject born in 1894, Valentine Francis Beazley, joined the Australian Imperial Force in 1915. He was born in the town of Nubba Siding, NSW, Australia and occupied a life of labouring. On the 27th of September he enlisted in Cootamundra, NSW, to the 2nd Light Horse Regiment, to then go on to be a driver in the 10th Field Artillery Brigade and died while serving for the 110th Howitzer Battery as a driver in 1918. Beazley, was a tall (5’10”), thin Roman Catholic with a dark complexion, brown eyes and black hair. His friends who called him ‘Bill’ or ‘Val’ expressed that he was a “real good fellow- the best of pals” and that he was a general favourite in the Battery.

Beazley was three when his mother died, in an interview with Beazley’s father, William, of Thornhill, Young, stated that before Beazley’s mother died it was her dying wish that her sister Mrs CB Keegh, who was married at the time, should take Beazley and look after him, which she did until he enlisted for the war. Beazley’s auntie claimed in a police report that his uncle, Andrew Howard (next of kin along with William Beazley) was never considered as Valentine’s guardian as he did not contribute to the support of his nephew. Valentine, though, regarded his uncle to be his guardian as he made his place Valentine’s home. When Valentine’s mother fell ill and was not expected to live, Andrew sent a telegram to William, who was employed on Lake Cowal near Marsden, informing him of the situation but did not hear a reply until Valentine was 18. His father never contributed towards supporting Valentine and his address was unknown- he was practically inaccessible. At the time that Valentine enlisted for the war, he received three pounds from his father and a letter informing him that he had work for Valentine. Valentine cashed the cheque and remarked “That was the first money he ever gave me and I will keep it.” Valentine did not reply to his father’s letter.

On the 18th of November in 1915, Beazley embarked at Sydney on the A34 ‘Persic’ ship as a part of the 2nd Light Horse Brigade, 7th Light Horse regiment and 12th Reinforcements. Valentine served in Egypt and on the Western Front in France. He was ‘taken on strength’ of the 2nd Light Horse regiment from the 7th Light Horse Brigade and from there, on the 1st of April 1916, he was transferred to the 10th Field Artillery Brigade (10th FAB) and mustered as a driver in France on the 1st of June that year. He fell ill on the 21st of June 1916 and was taken to hospital, but returned back to the 10th FAB only a few days later. During his time in the war, Valentine received three medals: the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and Victory Medal.

On the 8th of August, 1918, Valentine Francis Beazley was killed in between 10 and 11 a.m. by a shell while he was driving the team near Hamel, France- he was killed instantly. One of the people in the team saw his death and reported “We were being shelled out, and while we were trying to get our guns into shelter under a bank, a shell landed on the team and he was driving. I did not see him, though I saw the shell burst.” Another informant said that he still had a smile on his face when he died and said “I’m hit in the back, don’t touch me.” The informant then added that he knew Beazley well, they had been in the Light Horse together and that he was exceedingly well liked in the Battery (110th Howitzer Battery). His death was confirmed on the 9th of August, 1918 and Beazley is now buried at the Adelaide Cemetery, Villers-Bretonneux in France.



Biography contributed by Elizabeth Allen

Valentine Francis BEAZLEY was born in Nubba Siding, New South Wales in 1894

His parents were William Francis BEAZLEY & Ada Elizabeth HOWARD

He was Killed in Action on 9th August, 1918 and buried in the Adelaide Cemetery in France (Plot III, Row S, Grave 8) - his name is memorialised on the Australian War Memorial