William Mathew CURREY VC

CURREY, William Mathew

Service Numbers: 1584, 1584A
Enlisted: 9 October 1916, Sydney, New South Wales
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 53rd Infantry Battalion
Born: Wallsend, New South Wales, 19 September 1895
Home Town: Leichhardt, Leichhardt, New South Wales
Schooling: Dudley and Plattsburg Public Schools
Occupation: Wire worker
Died: Natural causes, Bexley, New South Wales, 30 April 1948, aged 52 years
Cemetery: Woronora General Cemetery and Crematorium, N.S.W.
Memorials: John Hamilton VC Pictorial Honour Roll, Keith Payne VC Memorial Park, Leichhardt War Memorial, North Bondi War Memorial, Winchelsea WWI Memorial
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World War 1 Service

9 Oct 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 1584, Sydney, New South Wales
9 Nov 1916: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 1584, Light Trench Mortar Batteries, --- :embarkation_roll: roll_number: '4' embarkation_place: Sydney embarkation_ship: HMAT Benalla embarkation_ship_number: A24 public_note: ''
6 Feb 1917: Transferred AIF WW1, Private, 53rd Infantry Battalion
26 Sep 1917: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 1584, 53rd Infantry Battalion, Polygon Wood
1 Sep 1918: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 1584, 53rd Infantry Battalion, Mont St Quentin / Peronne
1 Sep 1918: Honoured Victoria Cross, Mont St Quentin / Peronne
2 Apr 1919: Discharged AIF WW1, Private, SN 1584A, 53rd Infantry Battalion

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"William Currey was born at Wallsend, New South Wales, and worked in Sydney as a wireworker. After attempts to enlist while under-age, he was accepted in 1916. Initially in a light trench mortar battery, he transferred to the 53rd Battalion in 1917. He fought in the battle of Polygon Wood.

In the attack on Péronne, 1 September 1918, Currey's company was taking casualties from a field gun at close range. He ran forward under fire, captured the gun and killed the crew. Later, when the advance was checked by an enemy strongpoint, Currey moved around the flank with a Lewis gun, inflicting casualties and dispersing the enemy. Early next morning he volunteered to relay orders to an isolated unit: proceeding into no man's land, he called out, drawing enemy fire. Despite being gassed and having his respirator holed, he returned safely.

After the war Currey was involved in politics and in 1941 became the first Victoria Cross recipient in the New South Wales parliament, retaining his seat until his death.

Currey received the Victoria Cross, service medals for the First World War and the King George VI Coronation Medal." - SOURCE (www.awm.gov.au)