Service Number: 341
Enlisted: 19 September 1914
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 3rd Field Company Engineers
Born: Condoblin, New South Wales, Australia, 2 December 1883
Home Town: Queenstown, West Coast, Tasmania
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Miner
Died: Killed in Action, Pozieres, France, 24 July 1916, aged 32 years
Cemetery: Pozières British Cemetery
Plot III, Row K, Grave No 11.
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World War 1 Service

19 Sep 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 341, 3rd Field Company Engineers
Date unknown: Involvement Private, SN 341, 1st Pioneer Battalion

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Biography contributed

John Hunter stated on his enlistment papers that he was 30 years of age, born in Condoblin NSW. He was working as a miner in Queenstown, Tasmania and gave his next of kin as his uncle, Thomas West, of Queenstown. He enlisted at Pontville, near Hobart during September 1914. It seems he left Australia with the 3rd Field Engineers in October 1914.

He served at the Anzac Landing, and survived until July 1915 before he was wounded by shrapnel in the back. He returned to Gallipoli within a month and served there until evacuated very sick with dysentry late in the campaign. He transferred to the 1st Pioneer Battalion before moving to the Western Front. He was first reported as wounded, then wounded and missing and his death was finally confirmed months later as, 'killed in action' 24 July 1916, at Pozieres.

His uncle, Thomas West, an uncle from the mothers side, was questioned several times as to the whereabouts of John Hunter's father, mother and brothers and sisters. Thomas stated that he reared John Hunter from the age of seven, and his mother and father had disappeared and not been seen in all that time. There was a sister, but she had also disappeared many years before. Thomas West eventually received John's medals under bond, and in 1920 his identity disc when it was recovered from his remains which were reburied in Pozieres British Cemetery.

John Hunter left his will in favour of his uncle, Thomas West, however Thomas had to lodge an appeal to before he was eventually granted John's war gratuity. The gratuity was an amount of 128 pounds at the time, an a which, according to the Reserve Bank, is valued at a little over $11,000 in today's value.