Dorothy Mary (Dot) FENELEY

FENELEY, Dorothy Mary

Service Numbers: Not yet discovered
Enlisted: 14 May 1917
Last Rank: Staff Nurse
Last Unit: 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital, HAREFIELD
Born: Allynbrook, New South Wales, Australia, 30 January 1892
Home Town: Maitland, Maitland Municipality, New South Wales
Schooling: Dominican Convent, Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
Occupation: Nurse
Died: Natural causes, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 29 August 1955, aged 63 years
Cemetery: Campbell's Hill (West Maitland) Cemetery
RC D4, 70
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World War 1 Service

14 May 1917: Enlisted Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), Staff Nurse, Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1)
9 Jun 1917: Involvement Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1)
9 Jun 1917: Embarked Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), RMS Mooltan, Sydney
12 Aug 1917: Embarked Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), Staff Nurse, Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), HMS Osmanieh, Alexandria for Solinica - disembarking 14 August 1917
24 Jan 1919: Embarked Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), Staff Nurse, 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital, HAREFIELD, HMHS Delta, Devonport for return to Australia - arrived Melbourne 7 March 1919, then to Sydney, disembarking 22 March 1919 after quarantine for influenza.
14 Apr 1919: Discharged Australian Army Nursing Service (WW1), Staff Nurse, 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital, HAREFIELD

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Biography contributed by Michael Silver

Dorothy Mary Feneley was born at Allynbrook in 1892, the third oldest of Patrick Charles Feneley and Ellen Mary White’s seven children. Her mother’s family had a history as hoteliers in the Allynbrook, Gresford and Maitland areas, and in 1899 the family moved to West Maitland where her parents took over the Metropolitan Hotel. Her father died of peritonitis in 1907 and her mother married Alfred John Lindsay in 1911.

Dorothy was educated at the Dominican Convent at West Maitland where she excelled as a musician. She won many awards for piano and was considered of concert standard.

She decided, however, to train as a nurse, graduating from St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney and passing the examination for membership of the Australian Trained Nurses’ Association in 1915. She then decided to enlist, offering her services in 1916 before receiving the call to join the Australian Army Nursing Service in May 1917.

Staff Nurse Dorothy Feneley embarked from Sydney in the RMS Mooltan on 9 June 1917 after spending her final leave with her family in Maitland. After a month in Egypt, she was transferred to Salonika where she served for almost two years, attached to the 50th General Hospital, No. 2 unit, an English hospital staffed from New South Wales.

Dorothy Feneley returned to Sydney in the HMHS Delta, arriving on 12 March 1919 but then spent ten days at North Head Quarantine Station due to an influenza outbreak in the ship. She returned by train to Maitland on March 24.

Also, on board the Delta was nursing sister colleague and best friend, Alice Jane Thompson from Wollongong. Alice had married New Zealand born, Captain (Dr) Theophilus George Allen of the Australian Medical Corps on 16 January 1919 in London, just prior to returning to Australia. The couple had one child, but sadly Alice would die from Lysol poisoning at Dunedoo, New South Wales in 1922.

On 14 December 1924, Dr Theo Allen and Dorothy married in St. John’s Catholic Cathedral, West Maitland. They resided at Randwick almost all their married life and were to have three children together.

Dorothy passed away on 29 August 1955 at Randwick, aged 63 - she was buried in the Feneley family plot at Campbells Hill Cemetery, West Maitland. Theo died in 1963, at the aged of 73.

Two of Dorothy’s brothers, Cecil and Paul, enlisted with the A.I.F., the former being killed in France in 1918, just after passing his final law examinations. Her stepfather also served in the A.I.F.