Leo Vincent RANKIN


RANKIN, Leo Vincent

Service Number: 1718
Enlisted: 8 December 1915
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 55th Infantry Battalion
Born: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 8 October 1879
Home Town: Corowa, Corowa Shire, New South Wales
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Clerk
Died: Hepatitis/Nepatitis, Military Hospital, Wareham, Dorset, England, United Kingdom, 10 May 1917, aged 37 years
Cemetery: Wareham Cemetery
Plot B, Row D, Grave No. 19, Wareham Cemetery, Wareham, Dorset, England, United Kingdom
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour
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World War 1 Service

8 Dec 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 1718, 55th Infantry Battalion
14 Apr 1916: Involvement Private, SN 1718, 55th Infantry Battalion
14 Apr 1916: Embarked Private, SN 1718, 55th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Ceramic, Sydney

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

Biography contributed by Evan Evans

The summary below was completed by Cathy Sedgwick – Facebook “WW1 Australian War Graves in England/UK/Scotland/Ireland 

Died on this date – 10th May…… Leo Vincent Rankin was born on 8th October, 1879 in Melbourne, Victoria.

At the age of 19 years he played 1 game for the Melbourne Football Club in the Victorian Football League.

The 1903-1904 Australian Electoral Roll for the division of Corowa, New South Wales, listed Leo Vincent Rankin, Clerk, of Corowa. His father John Rankin was listed as Hotelkeeper, of Corowa.
From NSW Police Gazette – 13th November, 1912: “Apprehensions

Leo Rankin (34) and Roy Williams (23), charged with assaulting Edward Gallagher, with intent to rob him, have been arrested by Constables Wright and Thompson, Sydney Police. Committed for trial at Quarter Sessions.”

Leo Rankin was sentenced to Gaol on 23rd August, 1913.

On 8th December, 1915 Leo Vincent Rankin enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force (A.I.F.) at Yass, NSW as a 36 year old, single, Clerk.

Private Leo Vincent Rankin, Service Number 1718, embarked from Sydney, NSW on HMAT Ceramic (A40) on 14th April, 1916 with the 55th Infantry Battalion, 2nd Reinforcements & disembarked at Port Said on 16th May, 1916.

He was absent from 19.15 hrs on 22nd July, 1916 until apprehended by Military Police at 06.15 hrs on 26th July, 1916. He forfeited 5 days pay & 7 days extra fatigues.

On 29th July, 1916 Private Rankin embarked from Alexandria on H.M.T. Arcadian & disembarked at Southampton, via Marseilles on 9th August, 1916.

Reinforcements were only given basic training in Australia. Training was completed in training units in England. Some of these were located in the Salisbury Plain & surrounding areas in the county of Wiltshire.

Private Rankin was absent without leave from Camp at Larkhill, Wiltshire from 9.30 pm on 9th August, 1916 till 8.30 am on 13th August, 1916. This was admonished & he forfeited 5 days pay.

He was absent without leave from 9pm on 21st August, 1916 until 6 am. He was awarded 21 days confined to camp & forfeited 5 days’ pay.

He was written up for an Offence – absent without leave from 14th Training Battalion at Larkhill, Wiltshire from 10 pm on 29th August, 1916 until 6 am on 7th September, 1916. He was awarded 14 days Field Punishment No. 2 & forfeited 10 days pay.

Private Rankin embarked for overseas & was marched in to 5 D.B.D. (Divisional Base Depot) at Etaples, France on 11th September, 1916.

On 8th October, 1916 he was admitted to 26th General Hospital at Etaples, France with Varicose Veins. He was transferred to Calais on 9th October, 1916 & embarked on 10th October, 1916 on Hospital Ship Dieppe for England where he was admitted to Military Hospital at Herne Bay, England on 10th October, 1916 with varicose veins in both legs. He was transferred to 3rd Auxiliary Hospital at Dartford on 24th November, 1916.

He was written up for an Offence while at No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs - absent without leave from 9.45 pm on 18th December, 1916 till apprehended at 9 pm on 10th January, 1917 & making a false statement to Military Police. He was awarded 24 days F.P. (Field Punishment) No. 2 & forfeited 28 days’ pay on 15th January, 1917.

Private Rankin was posted to No. 1 Command Depot at Perham Downs, Wiltshire on 18th January, 1917. He was medically classified as B1 A4 (fit for overseas training camp when passed dentally fit). On 20th January, 1917 he was marched into No. 4 Command Depot at Wareham, Dorset.

On 1st February, 1917 he was sent sick to Wareham Military Hospital & admitted on 1st February, 1917. He was marched in to No. 4 Command Depot at Wareham from Hospital on 16th February, 1917.

He was reported absent from No. 4 Command Depot, Wareham, Dorset from 13th March, 1917. He reported back at No. 4 Command Depot on 30th March, 1917.

Private Rankin was sent sick to 16th Field Ambulance (Isolation Hospital) at Wareham on 4th April, 1917. He was then admitted to Military Hospital, Wareham on 5th April, 1917 with Haematuria.

Private Rankin was reported to be seriously ill at Military Hospital, Wareham on 4th May, 1917.

Private Leo Vincent Rankin died at 7 pm on 10th May, 1917 at Military Hospital, Wareham, Dorset, England from Hepatitis. (Several forms in the service record file for Pte Rankin record that he died of Nepatitis).

He was buried in Wareham Cemetery, Wareham, Dorset, England where 12 other WW1 Australian Soldiers are laid to rest.

(The above is a summary of my research. The full research can be found by following the link below)