Malcolm Murray Alexander GREIG


GREIG, Malcolm Murray Alexander

Service Number: 2322
Enlisted: Not yet discovered
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 12th Infantry Battalion
Born: Willowie, South Australia., 20 January 1880
Home Town: Kingsthorpe, Toowoomba, Queensland
Schooling: Willowie Primary, South Australia
Occupation: Farmer
Died: Died of wounds, Belgium, 6 October 1917, aged 37 years
Cemetery: Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery
Plot 20, Row E, Grave No 10A., Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, Lijssenthoek, Flanders, Belgium
Memorials: 42nd Infantry Battalion AIF Roll of Honour, Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Kingsthorpe Roll of Honor, Willowie Memorial Hall Stained Glass Window 1, Willowie Schools and District Roll of Honor
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World War 1 Service

21 Oct 1916: Involvement Private, SN 2322, 42nd Infantry Battalion, Third Ypres
21 Oct 1916: Embarked Private, SN 2322, 42nd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Boonah, Brisbane
6 Oct 1917: Involvement Private, SN 2322, 12th Infantry Battalion, Third Ypres

Murray Alexander Greig

Was born on Tuesday 20th January 1880 at Willowie, South Australia, the first child born to Murray and Ann (nee Fisher) Greig. Murray had eight brothers and sisters.

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Biography contributed by Di Barrie

Malcolm Murray Alexander Greig was eldest of the nine children of Murray and Ann (nee Fisher) Greig, of Kingsthorpe, Queensland.

In 1902 when Malcom was 22 years old the Greig family had moved from Willowie in South Australia to Queensland, looking for improved farming land because of the long-standing drought which had affected the Willowie region during the 1890’s. They farmed in the Oakey/Kingsthorpe area of the Darling Downs Region, south eastern Queensland.

Born on 20th January 1880 at Willowie, he had attended Willowie School, and served in various capacities in the local community until his departure to Queensland. He enlisted in Toowoomba, Queensland on 4 May 1916 into the 42 Battalion which was raised at Enoggera on the outskirts of Brisbane in December 1915 and became part of the 11 Brigade of the 3 Australian Division.

 On enlistment Malcolm was 36 years of age, occupation farmer and religion Methodist. His medical showed he was 5”6” (167cm) tall and weighed 151lbs (68kg), with a medium complexion, blue eyes and brown hair. His next of kin was his father Murray Greig. The unit embarked from Brisbane on board HMAT A36 ‘Boonah’ on 21 October 1916, (AWM Embarkation number 23/59/2).

Malcolm kept a diary of his voyage to England via South Africa, which is now kept at the Mitchell Library, State Library of NSW: Collection of World War 1 Diaries.

He arrived in England on the 10 January 1917. On arrival at the 11 Training Btn at Durrington, he spent over a week in hospital at Parkhouse with Mumps and Influenza. He proceeded to France on 29th May 1917.

In 1917 the operations of the 3rd Division were focused on the Ypres sector of Belgium. The 42 Battalion participated in major battles at Messines (7 June), Warneton (31 July), and Broodseinde on the 4 October. It was in this action that Malcolm suffered Gunshot Wounds which resulted in a perforated abdomen on the 4 October, and he died of his wounds on the 6 October 1917 at the 10 Casualty Clearing Station. He was buried at the Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery (Plot 20, Row E, Grave No 10A) in Belgium.

His service is commemorated at the:

  • Australian War Memorial, Canberra. Memorial Panel 135
  • 42nd Memorial, Shrine of Remembrance, Brisbane, Queensland.
  • Willowie School & Districts Honour Roll Willowie Memorial Hall
  • Willowie Church Memorial windows at the Willowie Memorial Hall

Source: "Diggers From the Dust" Di Barrie & Andrew Barrie; 2018