Norman Benjamin Lyndon CRABB

CRABB, Norman Benjamin Lyndon

Service Number: 450
Enlisted: 17 January 1916
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 43rd Infantry Battalion
Born: Renmark, South Australia, 23 July 1895
Home Town: Norton Summit, Adelaide Hills, South Australia
Schooling: Public School ,South Australia
Occupation: Gardener
Died: Accidental (Injuries), In the Field, Marseilles, France, 7 April 1917, aged 21 years
Cemetery: Pont-de-Nieppe Communal Cemetery
Plot II Row C, Grave No.I
Memorials: Adelaide National War Memorial, Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Magill War Memorial, Norton Summit War Memorial
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World War 1 Service

17 Jan 1916: Enlisted AIF WW1
9 Jun 1916: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, 450, 43rd Infantry Battalion, --- :embarkation_roll: roll_number: '18' embarkation_place: Adelaide embarkation_ship: HMAT Afric embarkation_ship_number: A19 public_note: ''
9 Jun 1916: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, 450, 43rd Infantry Battalion, HMAT Afric, Adelaide

Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb

Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb was born in Renmark South Australia. He was the youngest son of John and Jane Elizabeth Crabb of “The Willows” Magill. John Crabb worked for the Survey Dept and also the irrigation Dept at Cobdogla, South Australia.
Norman joined the 43rd Battalion C Company; he left Australia on the HMAT 19 Afric on 9th June 1916. He was employed as a Market Gardner along with his brother, on their 18 acre property at Norton’s Summit South Australia. Shortly after enlisting, his brother also enlisted, and the property was left in the hands of a neighbour. He died in an accidental shooting in France. He was shot in the chest by L/Corp Hillier Reg. No. 1931. His C/O confirmed the shooting was accidental. Norman is buried at Pont De Nieppe Communal Cemetery, Plot 2. Row C, Grave No 1.
Murray Pioneer and Australian River Record (Renmark, SA : 1913 - 1942) Friday 11 May 1917 p 4
Murray Pioneer and Australian River Record (Renmark, SA : 1913 - 1942) Friday 11 May 1917 p 4

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Biography contributed by Elizabeth Allen

Norman Benjamin Lyndon CRABB was born in Renmark, South Australia on 23rd July, 1895

His parents were John CRABB & Jane Elizabeth Cordon BRIGGS


Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb grew up in Norton Summit, Adelaide Hills, South Australia.

Norman was educated through a public school in South Australia. At 21 and a half years old he enlisted to go to war, before he went to war, his occupation was a Gardener. He did not have a wife, nor children. His Father, Mr. John Crabb and his Mother, Jane Elizabeth Crabb, both lived on Gladstone Avenue in Magill whilst he lived in Renmark. Norman had a brother that went to war named Murray John Rossiter Crabb. Murray enlisted at the age of 26 and a half.

The Crabb brothers both enlisted in Renmark on the 17th of January, 1916 and were both ranked as Privates. Norman was put into the 43rd Infantry Battalion and Murray was put into the 10th.

From the 1st to 8th of February Norman was vaccinated, inspected, examined and was passed through to go to war. Norman embarked on the A19 Afric from Outer Harbour on the 9th of June, 1916.  The A19 Afric took the 11th Brigade (41st, 42nd, 43rd and 44th Battalions) full of South Australian men to Egypt, only for a brief amount of time. Norman must have been sick in hospital during this as on his service record it states the only place he disembarked from was Marseilles. On the 20th of June, 1916 the ship went to Marseilles, France. The war that the soldiers of the 11th Brigade were training for was the Battle of Messines which took place in June, 1917.

In France, the men of the 43rd Battalion trained at a placed called Surrey Farm, this was their headquarters. In July, 1917, Surrey Farm was bombed.

Within the first 9 days of sailing on the A19 Afric, Norman was admitted to the ships hospital on the 18th of June, he was then discharged 3 days after on the 21st. One day after being discharged from the ship’s hospital, he was admitted again. On the 7th of July he was finally discharged. After these events in hospital he was let out to proceed training in France. Once again on the 8th of November 1916, he was admitted to hospital in Steenwerck, a commune in French Flanders. It turned out that he had mumps, which is a contagious, infectious and viral disease. He then re-joined battalion 43 on the 28th of December, 1916.

On the 7th of April 1917, Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb was killed by the accidental discharge of a rifle held by Lance Corporal Harold Percy Hillier. Harold was charged with the offence of manslaughter put plead not guilty. On the 28th of May, 1917 he was found not guilty and let go free of charge. Norman died just two months before his battalion took place in their first war.

Norman received two medals for his time at war, the Victory Medal, for entering and serving his country at war frim the years 1914 and 18, and the British War Medal for service abroad. These medals demonstrate ANZAC Sprit in the way that Norman was willing to be involved and show courage to fight for his country.

Norman’s brother, Murray John Rossiter Crabb fought until 1918, when on the 24th of April he was killed in action.


Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb 2016, RSL Virtual War Memorial, accessed 6 April 2016, <>.

Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb 2016, National Archives of Australia, accessed 6 April 2016, <>.

43rd Australian Infantry Battalion n.d., Australian War Memorial, accessed 6 April 2016, <>.

A19 Afric 2012, Australian Shipping Lines, accessed 6 April 2016, <>.

Norman Benjamin Lyndon Crabb n.d., The AIF Project, accessed 6 April 2016, <>.