Francis Edward DWYER


DWYER, Francis Edward

Service Numbers: 54, 981
Enlisted: 7 September 1914, Blackboy Hill, Western Australia
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 11th Infantry Battalion
Born: Oberon, New South Wales, 14 October 1875
Home Town: Meekatharra, Meekatharra, Western Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Clerk
Died: Killed in Action, Gallipoli, 21 June 1915, aged 39 years
Cemetery: Lone Pine Cemetery, ANZAC
Plot 1, Row G, Grave 19
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour
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Boer War Service

1 Jan 1900: Involvement Australian and Colonial Military Forces (Boer War / Boxer Rebellion), Private, SN 54, 4th Western Australian Mounted Infantry

World War 1 Service

7 Sep 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 981, Blackboy Hill, Western Australia
2 Nov 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 981, 11th Infantry Battalion, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
2 Nov 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 981, 11th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Ascanius, Fremantle
21 Jun 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 981, 11th Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli

Francis Edward Dwyer

Francis Edward Dwyer was born on 18 October 1874 in the central west of New South Wales to Owen Dwyer and his wife Elizabeth nee Byrne, both of whom were born in Ireland. His birth was registered in Bathurst but Francis on his WWI enlistment papers stated he was born in Oberon. It is more likely that he was born in Trunkey Creek which is about equidistant from Bathurst and Oberon. His father was the owner of "The Corner Hotel" in Trunkey Creek.

His mother died in Bathurst when he was only ten in 1884. It is probable that the family moved to West Wyalong around 1893 (which is when the John Meagher store was opened) where Owen earned his living as a grocer in his brother-in-law's department store. It is not known if Francis accompanied the family to West Wyalong or not.

Francis, who was a twenty five year old clerk in Geraldton, joined the Fourth Imperial Bushmen (possibly also known as the Fourth Western Australian Mounted Infantry) and sailed from Fremantle, Western Australia for South Africa on 8 May 1900. The unit took part in quite a few engagements during the Boer War before returning to Australia.

Frank returned to his calling as a clerk on the railways and sometime afterwards he was involved in the Murchison goldfields originally as a prospector and later as a clerk.

Francis appears to have lost contact with his family although they appear to have tried to re-establish contact around the time of his death.

On the seventh of October 1914, he enlisted in the 11 Battalion Infantry in Blackboy Hill, Perth. He embarked on HMAT Ascanius A11 on second of November 1914 for training in Egypt.

His battalion was the first ashore on Anzac day 1915.

He was killed by shrapnel on twenty first of June 1915 and was buried in Browns Dip Cemetery at the head of Victoria Gully about half a mile South East of Anzac Cove and in 1923, his remains were exhumed and reburied in Lone Pine Cemetery as the former cemetery was in danger of being flooded.

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Biography contributed by Carol Foster

Son of Owen and Eliza Dwyer of West Wylong, NSW; brother of Patrick Joseph Dwyer

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

Also served in the Boer War with 4 Mounted Infantry Contingent with the rank of Private. Service number 54