Service Number: 2976
Enlisted: Not yet discovered
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 60th Infantry Battalion
Born: Cawdor, New South Wales, Australia, 19 May 1897
Home Town: Mount Hunter, Wollondilly, New South Wales
Schooling: Mount Hunter, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation: Labourer Farmhand
Died: Died of wounds, France, 28 September 1917, aged 20 years
Cemetery: St Sever Cemetery Extension, Rouen
St Sever Cemetery Extension, Haute-Normandie, France
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Camden Cenotaph, Mount Hunter War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

3 Nov 1916: Involvement Private, SN 2976, 60th Infantry Battalion, Third Ypres
3 Nov 1916: Embarked Private, SN 2976, 60th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Afric, Sydney

Help us honour Bruce Stratton's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Julie Duncan

Originally published by Julie Duncan 28. 9. 2013

On this day, at this time, (September 28, 8AM) in 1917, in a general field hospital, in Rouen France a young 20 year old man from the small farming village of Cawdor outside Camden NSW, succumbed to his wounds. His passing would have been just another ripple in the ever growing tide of deaths during the Great War.
Young Bruce Stratton enlisted in the AIF on 17th August 1916 and like many young Aussie men of the time he too looked at it as a great adventure. He eventually arrived in France (via England) in early 1917. His service records tell you a lot - he was a farm labourer, he had very neat handwriting, he was 5'10" had dark brown hair and blue-grey eyes.
He eventually ended up serving with the 60th Battalion and he was admitted to hospital with a gunshot wound to the arm on 12th May 1917, where after a period of about a month he returned to his unit and active duty.
A little over four months later on 25th September he was wounded again. This time he received gun shot wounds to both legs and both hands. He was transferred via field ambulance to a casualty clearing station and was eventually admitted on 27th September to the general hospital in Rouen, France. Where he passed away at 8am on September 28th.
The nurse who tended him wrote to young Bruce's distraught mother Rowena. The letter told her that he was not in any pain, and he had been more concerned as to the condition and whereabouts of his Superior Officer and his mate. He was buried in a soldiers grave in St Severs cemetery just outside Rouen.
It is heartwrenching to read the letters his mother had written to the authorities pleading for details and information on her son, information that they could not or perhaps would not answer.
The diaries of the 60th battalion are at times an interesting read. The diaries place the battalion, on September 25th, near Hooge, Ypres Sector, in Belgium, where on the evening of 25th they took many casualties. Hooge is about 5km from Polygon Wood in Belgium and the 26th of September is listed as the starting date of a major offensive of the Battalion which lasted until October 3rd.
Bruce was not the only member of his family killed in WW1 he had three cousins who also died in the Great War.
I just wanted to say thank you to this great-uncle of mine and thank you to all who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for their countries. and thanks to the relatives who unearthed the photos of young Bruce.
#ANZAC #lestweforget. #WW1