Maurice Francis BURKE

BURKE, Maurice Francis

Service Numbers: 79, 1504, Commissioned
Enlisted: 20 June 1915, Place of enlistment - Broadmeadows, Victoria
Last Rank: Lieutenant
Last Unit: 29th Infantry Battalion
Born: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia, 4 December 1885
Home Town: St Kilda, Port Phillip, Victoria
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Cable Telegraphist
Died: Heart Attack, Caulfield, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 2 August 1955, aged 69 years
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials: Ballarat Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

11 Aug 1914: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 79, 1st Infantry Battalion, Naval and Military Forces - Special Tropical Corps
19 Aug 1914: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 79, 1st Infantry Battalion, Naval and Military Forces - Special Tropical Corps, Embarked on HMAS Berrima from Sydney on 19th August 1914, arriving at Rabaul, German New Guinea on 9th September 1914. The initial landings, in what would became Australia’s first joint force operation, took place at dawn on 11 September 1914 and on 13 September the British flag was hoisted at Rabaul. Within a few weeks most of the German territories in the area, including Bougainville and the Admiralty Islands, had been occupied without further opposition, at a cost of six dead and four wounded. On 22 September 1914 Berrima departed Rabual bound for Madang to disembark garrison troops and a company of naval reservists, returning to Rabaul on 26 September. Berrima sailed from Rabaul on 4 October, carrying sick and wounded personnel bound for Sydney. Berrima subsequently arrived in Sydney on 13 October 1914. Despite initial plans to employ her as an armed merchant cruiser she was decommissioned on 20 October 1914. The ship was then converted to a troop transport in November 1914.
29 Sep 1914: Promoted AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, 1st Infantry Battalion, Naval and Military Forces - Special Tropical Corps
11 May 1915: Transferred AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Naval and Military Forces - Special Tropical Corps
22 May 1915: Discharged AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, SN 79, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Naval and Military Forces - Special Tropical Corps
20 Jun 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 1504, Place of enlistment - Broadmeadows, Victoria
1 Sep 1915: Promoted AIF WW1, Sergeant
10 Nov 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Sergeant, SN 1504, 29th Infantry Battalion, Embarked on HMAT 'A11' Ascanius from Melbourne 0n 10th November 1915.
29 Jul 1916: Promoted AIF WW1, Second Lieutenant, 29th Infantry Battalion
28 Dec 1916: Promoted AIF WW1, Lieutenant, 29th Infantry Battalion
2 Mar 1917: Imprisoned He was captured on 2 March 1917 at Le Transloy, France, where he received a hand grenade splinter wound to the right forearm and both legs. He was hospitalised at Osnabruck, before being transferred to POW Camps at Karlsruhe, then Freiburg. He was repatriated to England on 4 December 1918.
2 Mar 1917: Wounded AIF WW1, Lieutenant, SN Commissioned, 29th Infantry Battalion, Hand grenade splinter wound to the right forearm and both legs
8 Aug 1919: Embarked AIF WW1, Lieutenant, SN Commissioned, 29th Infantry Battalion, Embarked on HT Katoomba from England on 8th August 1919 with his wife, disembarking Melbourne.
26 Nov 1919: Discharged AIF WW1, Lieutenant, SN Commissioned, 29th Infantry Battalion

Help us honour Maurice Francis Burke's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.

Biography contributed by Daryl Jones

Son of George John and Anne Gertrude (nee Daly) BURKE of 37 Brighton Road St Kilda.  Married Hilda Florence Derry at St Mary's Church Fulham, England on 17th December 1918, Vicar C Bradshaw Foy officiating. Maurice Burke was a committee member, honorary treasurer, and a trustee of the Melbourne Athenaeum Library.

Brother of

 

  • Sister Lalah Mary "Sally" BURKE - Australian Army Nursing Service, returned to Australia 13th April 1919 (born 1887)
  • Captain Harold BURKE (MC) - 5th Infantry Battalion, killed in action , France 23rd August 1918 (born 1893)
  • Major Edmund Louis "Teddy" BURKE (MC) - 4th Field Artillery Brigade, returned to Australia 4th September 1919 (born 1896)  Edmund entered the Royal Military College, Duntroon on 9 March 1913 and graduated, along with the rest of his class, early on 28 June 1915.
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Biography contributed by Evan Evans

From Regimental Books - Australian Military History and edited extracts from AWM

We Remember Today - Lieutenant Maurice Francis Burke. Lt Burke enlisted at the age of 28 on 11 August 1914 and served overseas in Rabaul with the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force (AN&MEF).

He returned to Australia and was discharged on 4 March 1915. He subsequently re-enlisted on 20 June 1915 and embarked for overseas on 10 November 1915 aboard HMAT Ascanius.

He was captured on 2 March 1917 at Le Transloy, France, where he received a hand grenade splinter wound to the right forearm and both legs.

He was hospitalised at Osnabruck, before being transfered to POW Camps at Karlsruhe, then Freiburg. He was repatriated to England on 4 December 1918.

His sister was Lalah Mary Burke a nurse at the Royal Childrens' Hospital in Melbourne prior to enlistment in the Australian Army Nursing Service aged 27 in May 1915, Lalah Burke served with the 1st Australian General Hospital (1AGH) in Alexandria, and from April 1916, in France. She was promoted to Sister in October 1918, returned to Australia in 1919 and was discharged in July of that year. She married Mr Frederick Batchelder several years later. Lt Burke's brothers also served, Captain Harold Burke MC, and Major Edmund Louis Burke MC also served, Captain Harold Burke being killed in action in August 1918.  Lt Burke's family is one that fully served Australia and the Empire during WWI.  No back steps in this family!

Lt Burke was born 4th December 1885 Hobart the son of George John and Annie Burke (nee Daly). He maried to Hilda Florence Derry. He died 2nd August 1955 Caulfield of a heart attack.

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