John Francis NAUGHTON


NAUGHTON, John Francis

Service Number: 963
Enlisted: 1 September 1914, Randwick, New South Wales
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 3rd Infantry Battalion
Born: Charters Towers, Queensland, Australia, 6 October 1885
Home Town: Charters Towers, Charters Towers, Queensland
Schooling: St. Columbus School, , Queensland, Australia
Occupation: Baker
Died: Died of Illness, Fulham, England, 18 November 1916, aged 31 years
Cemetery: Kensal Green (All Souls) Cemetery
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Richmond Hill Teachers and Ex-Pupils Great War Honour Roll
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World War 1 Service

1 Sep 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 963, Randwick, New South Wales
20 Oct 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 963, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
20 Oct 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 963, 3rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Euripides, Sydney
25 Apr 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 963, 3rd Infantry Battalion, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli

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


Next of Kin listed in Service Record as Mother - Mrs Harriett Naughton, Charters Towers. There is a notation indicating that his Father was deceased.

Enlisting on 1 September 1914 he was 28 years & 4 months in age.

Service Record indicates that a  bomb exploded in his hands - Gallipoli - which necessitated immediate amputation of both hands. 14 Aug 1915 He also sustained injuries to his thigh and hip.

23 May 1916 it was recommended that he be discharged as from the Army as permanently unfit.

He died of renal calculus resulting from severe wounds on 18 November 1916




Biography contributed by Evan Evans

From 'In Memory Of'

In Memory Of Private John Francis Naughton (6 October 1885 - 18 November 1916). One of the saddest stories I have come across.

A wounded Australian soldier, who lost both hands, writing a letter by using the stumps of his wrists to hold the pen, most likely at No.1 Australian Auxiliary Hospital, Harefield, England. Most likely he was writing home.

The soldier is Private John Francis Naughton of Charters Towers, Queensland. A baker prior to enlistment, he embarked with the 3rd Battalion in September 1914 and served on Gallipoli, where he was wounded on the 14th of August 1915, when a bomb exploded in his hands, also injuring his right thigh and knee.

He was evacuated to a hospital ship via Mudros, and from there to England, spending time at King George Hospital, Harefield, Roehampton Hospital, St Mary's Convalescent Hospital and ultimately to Fulham Hospital where he died from kidney issues due to his wounds.

Initially, he was buried in an open grave, because at the time they couldn’t keep pace with the number of men dying in the hospitals.

They were still burying soldiers en masse up until 1917. Individual graves were for officers and nurses, who were honorary officers. The other soldiers were often buried in pits.

Private Naughton's body was exhumed in 1921 and placed in a separate plot for Australian soldiers.

Australian anger over the undignified treatment that Private Naughton received in death led to better burial practices for the fallen. So in death, Private Naughton played an important role in shaping how Australia's war dead were treated.

Rest In Peace, Private Naughton. Lest We Forget.

Photograph and some information came from the Australian War Memorial.