Alexander HILTUNEN

HILTUNEN, Alexander

Service Number: 652
Enlisted: 2 September 1914
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 12th Infantry Battalion
Born: Vyborg, Finland , 6 April 1890
Home Town: Freeling, Light, South Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Fireman
Died: Tuberculosis , Port Elliot, South Australia , 5 January 1917, aged 26 years
Cemetery: Port Elliot - Middleton Cemetery, S.A.
Memorials: Freeling Boer War, Boxer Rebellion and WW1 Memorial Panel, Freeling WW1 Pictorial Honour Roll, Freeling War Memorial, Port Elliot War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

2 Sep 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 652, 12th Infantry Battalion
17 Sep 1914: Involvement Private, SN 652, 12th Infantry Battalion
17 Sep 1914: Embarked Private, SN 652, 12th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Geelong, Melbourne

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Biography contributed by Robert Kearney



January 9 1917.

The death occurred on Saturday at Port Elliot of Pte. Alexander Hiltunen, a member of the Returned Soldiers' Association.

The interest shown by the public of Port Elliot and Victor Harbor was evidenced by the number of conveyances at the funeral on Sunday. Pte Hiltunen was a Russian Finn, and judging by correspondence in his possession was of no mean birth. He arrived as a sailor at Port Adelaide about seven years ago, and leaving his ship made his way to Port Elliot. He was unable to speak the English language, but by making signs to Mrs. Trigg, of Cliff House, conveyed the fact that he was very hungry. He seemed young and fresh, and the good lady's heart went out to the lad, with the result that she treated him as a son, teaching him the English tongue, and giving him some experience at a trade. Subsequently he enlisted for the front, and after a bad attack of pneumonia and pleurisy was returned to Australia with consumption and other diseases contracted in his low state of health. He did not care to make his home with his friends on account of his complaint, and secured a position at Port Pirie as a watchman until all his money gave out in doctors' expenses. He then returned to Adelaide to obtain more assistance, but this was refused him, as he was receiving a pension. The boy had to give in and acquaint his former friends with his condition. He was sent for immediately and nursed by Mrs Trigg until a few days before his death, when a nurse who happened to be on holidays heard of the strain which that good lady was undergoing, and volunteered to assist her.

At the funeral four returned soldiers — Messrs McCoy, Stidson, Smith, and Tripp —acted as pallbearers. The Rev. Mr. Boyer read the burial service, in which he spoke of the manliness of the deceased.

Another mark of appreciation was shown by the public, when Mr. Bull (manager of the Y.M.C.A. concert party) organized a concert at Port Victor on Sunday afternoon for a collection to place a headstone on the grave. Members of the Returned Soldiers' Association have expressed deep appreciation of the sacrifice and motherly interest displayed by Mrs Trigg to the unfortunate soldier.

COUNTRY NEWS. (1917, January 11). Southern Argus (Port Elliot, SA : 1866 - 1954), p. 3.


He evidently was well connected in his own country, his brother-in-law being Lieutenant-Colonel Parlone, of the Russian army.

THE LATE PRIVATE A. HILTUNEN. (1917, January 13). Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954), p. 45