Thomas Linthal JESSER

JESSER , Thomas Linthal

Service Number: 2105
Enlisted: 25 May 1916
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 40th Infantry Battalion
Born: Laura, South Australia, Australia, December 1893
Home Town: Aberdeen , Burra, South Australia
Schooling: Baroota Public School, South Australia
Occupation: Colt breaker
Died: Died of wounds, France, 12 June 1917
Cemetery: Mont Huon Military Cemetery, le Treport, France
III. H. 9B., Mont Huon Military Cemetery, Le Treport, Haute-Normandie, France
Memorials: Adelaide National War Memorial, Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Burra District WW1 Honor Roll, Burra Fallen Soldiers Memorial, Port Germein War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

25 May 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, 2105, 43rd Infantry Battalion
28 Aug 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, 2105, 43rd Infantry Battalion, --- :embarkation_roll: roll_number: '18' embarkation_place: Adelaide embarkation_ship: HMAT Anchises embarkation_ship_number: A68 public_note: ''
28 Aug 1916: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, 2105, 43rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Anchises, Adelaide
15 Dec 1916: Wounded AIF WW1, Private, 2105, 40th Infantry Battalion, GSW R Leg
12 Jun 1917: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, 2105, 40th Infantry Battalion, Battle of Messines, --- :awm_ww1_roll_of_honour_import: awm_service_number: 2105 awm_unit: 40th Australian Infantry Battalion awm_rank: Private awm_died_date: 1917-06-12

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Biography contributed by St Aloysius College

 Thomas Linthal Jesser was born in December of 1893 and grew up with his mother and father in Laura, South Australia. He went to school at Baroota Public School, South Australia. Before Thomas enrolled to serve in World War I, he was a single man who was living with his parents. His mother was Mrs Mary Ann Jesser and his father was Mr William Jesser. They both lived in Burra, South Australia. Thomas Jesser worked as a colt breaker and he was a member of the Church of England. Thomas was 5 feet and 8 ¼ inches tall and weighed 152 lbs. He was seen to have a fresh complextion along with blue eyes and light brown hair. Thomas also had distinctive marks from a vaccination scar.

On the 25th of March 1916, Thomas Linthal Jesser, aged 23, enlisted in the Australian Imperial forces to serve in World War 1. He enlisted in Adelaide, South Australia. He had no prior military service. The enrolment papers contained questions such as his name, age, where he lived, next of kin (he nominated his mother), his occupation and he had to sign an oath, which then was signed off by the attesting officer. Once Thomas enlisted he was ranked as a private and was placed in the unit of the 3rd reinforcement to the 43rd Battalion and given the service number of 2105.

 After he enlisted he began military training. On the 28th of August, he embarked on the HMAT A68 Anchises ship to Plymouth along with the other soldiers of his Reinforcement. It took around a month and 17 days on the ship until they arrived in Plymouth, England.

Once they arrived they proceeded walking and by the next dayhe trained at Larkhill and on the 12th of November 1916 Thomas was given an order by the commanding officer from the 40th Battalion to be taken on strength.  On the 23rd of November the he proceeded overseas to France passing Southampton . At 6am to Havre, they arrived there at 2:30am the next day. They then disembarked that same day at 9am, to arrive that same night at 5pm in the Number 1 rest camp. The 40th battalion then slept at the rest camp and the next morning embarked to Merris at 11:15am. It took the 40th battalion two days on foot  arriving  at 6am on the 27th of November 1916. The 40th battalion then stayed in Merris for five days until they left for Armentieres at 9am on the 2nd of December 1916.

Once the 40th battalion arrived, they were sent to relieve the 13th battalion along with the 38th battalion and during this time. In the field Thomas was shot in the right leg (on 15th December) and was admitted to the hospital. Four days later he was admitted again to another diffrent hospital. As a result of  his injury, he was then transferred to Boulogne on the 19th of December 1916. Thomas arrived to the 7th Con Depot he stayed there for 5 days.  He was  finally was admitted to a rest camp and was dismissed on the 25th of the January 1917. He then marched in from the rest camp and on the 15th of February 1917. He marched back out to unit with the 40th battalion in Etaples. The next day Thomas re-joined the 40th battalion in the field. During this time, the 40th battalion was bogged in bloody trench warfare in Flanders. 

 As Thomas re-joined the battalion from the 16th of February, Thomas had to end his time of serving in the war as on the 7th of June 1917. He was once again injured from a bullet shot but in the left leg. As this occurred by the 40th Battalion taking part in the battle of Messines has during this battle he was shot along with 664 death that day and was transmitted to a hospital. Once he arrived at Le Treport he went into surgery. According to the medical reports his leg had to be amputated and Thomas went into operative shock. He never recovered and died on 12th June. Thomas was buried by H.C. Colvin-Lewis from the 47th Gen hospital in the Mont Huon Military Cemetery, Le Treport. 

After the death of Thomas Linthal Jesser, letters between the Australian imperial force, Mrs Mary Jesser and Mr William Jesser were sent, to inform them of their son’s tragic death. As Mary first received a letter asking to pick up a package of Thomas’ inventory on the 6th of April 1918. On the 18th of April 1918 Mary picked up the package and after that she received another letter asking about the family of Thomas Linthal Jesser to be identified for the Deceased Soldiers Estates Act 1918 and it was asked if his father was still alive. Mary replied with saying that Thomas’ farther was still alive and she put Mr William Jesser’s full name and address. Lastly, on the 22nd of February the Australian imperial force ask for a final package to be picked up of Thomas’ belongings.

Thomas Linthal Jesser was posthumously awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal for his service.