Matthew Sharratt FORD

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FORD, Matthew Sharratt

Service Numbers: 2595, 2695
Enlisted: 16 May 1915, Place of Enlistment, Liverpool, New South Wales.
Last Rank: Corporal
Last Unit: 1st Machine Gun Battalion
Born: Newtown, Montgomery Shire, England , 1880
Home Town: Killarney, Wyong Shire, New South Wales
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Shearer
Died: Killed in action, France, 17 April 1918
Cemetery: Le Grand Hasard Military Cemetery, Morbecque
Plot 3, Row B, Grave No 6., Le Grand Hasard Military Cemetery, Morbecque, Nord Pas de Calais, France
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour
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World War 1 Service

16 May 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 2595, 3rd Infantry Battalion, Place of Enlistment, Liverpool, New South Wales.
9 Aug 1915: Involvement Private, SN 2595, 3rd Infantry Battalion
9 Aug 1915: Embarked Private, SN 2595, 3rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Runic, Sydney
2 Nov 1915: Transferred AIF WW1, Private, 1st Machine Gun Company
12 Mar 1916: Promoted AIF WW1, Driver, 1st Machine Gun Battalion
24 Feb 1917: Wounded AIF WW1, Driver, SN 2695, 1st Machine Gun Company, Severe Gun Shot Wound to the Shoulder
30 Sep 1917: Promoted AIF WW1, Lance Corporal, 1st Machine Gun Company
2 Feb 1918: Promoted AIF WW1, Corporal, 1st Machine Gun Company
17 Apr 1918: Involvement Corporal, SN 2595, 1st Machine Gun Battalion

Matthew Sharratt Ford.

Matthew Sharratt Ford, Corporal, 2595, Australian Machine Gun Corps. Matthew was the son of Alfred Ford, JP, and Fanny Ford (nee Williams), of Ivycot, Abermule. He decided to emigrate to Australia, embarking at London aboard the SS Omrah on 6 December 1912, and disembarked at Melbourne. Matthew then became a sheep shearer at Killarney, Coogee, New South Wales. He enlisted into the Australian Imperial Force at Liverpool, NSW on 16 May 1915, joining the 8th Reinforcements for the 3rd Battalion, AIF, and embarked at Sydney with the unit aboard HMAT Runic on 9 September 1915. The unit disembarked at Alexandria, after their voyage through the Suez Canal, and on 2 November 1915 Matthew was among a number of men sent as drafts to the 3rd Battalion at Gallipoli. The Gallipoli troops were evacuated soon afterwards, and Matthew went back to Alexandria with the 3rd Battalion, and on 12 March 1916 he was posted to the newly formed 1st Brigade Machine Gun Company. On 22 March 1916 his unit embarked for Marseilles, and moved with the 1st Australian Division to the Western Front, to positions near Armentieres. The Division was sent to the Somme in July, and saw heavy fighting at Pozieres and Mouquet Farm. Matthew was hospitalised in October, suffering from Scabies, re-joining his unit two weeks later. The 1st Division followed the German withdrawal to the Hindenburg Line in February 1917 and in April 1917 took part in the Battle of Bullecourt. Matthew was wounded at Bullecourt, being shot in the shoulder, and was evacuated to the 3rd Field Ambulance before being sent to No 3 Stationary Hospital at Rouen. On 20 April he was transferred to England and treated at the 1st Southern General Hospital. He then enjoyed two weeks leave before returning to duty, joining the Australian Depot at Weymouth on 29 May. On 26 June Matthew embarked at Folkestone for France and on 8 July re-joined his battalion in time to take part in the Passchendaele offensive. In February 1918 there was some re-organisation of units in France, and Matthew’s unit became part of the 1st Battalion, Australian Machine Gun Corps, still attached to the 1st Australian Division, which was near Merris, in Flanders. On 9 April 1918 the Germans launched the second phase of their Spring offensive in the area, and the Australians became caught up in desperate fighting near Merris. Matthew was killed in action here on 17 April 1918, aged 27. He is buried in Le Grand Hasard Military Cemetery, Morbecque, France.

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