John William SANGSTER

SANGSTER, John William

Service Number: SX11115
Enlisted: 13 December 1940, Wayville, SA
Last Rank: Major
Last Unit: Not yet discovered
Born: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia , 26 September 1913
Home Town: Medindie, Walkerville, South Australia
Schooling: St Peter's College and University of Adelaide, South Australia
Occupation: Medical Practitioner
Died: South Australia, 3 April 1979, aged 65 years, cause of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
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World War 2 Service

13 Dec 1940: Involvement Major, SN SX11115
13 Dec 1940: Enlisted Wayville, SA
6 May 1946: Discharged

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Biography contributed by Annette Summers


1913 - 1979

John William Sangster was born, on 26th September 1913, in Melbourne. He was the son of Dr William Clifford Sangster and Vida Jessie Bruce, nee Paterson.  He was educated at St Peter’s College, Adelaide, and studied medicine at the University of Adelaide, graduating MB BS in 1939. He completed his resident year at the RAH in 1940.  He married Isobel Francis Ryall Goode, on 14th September 1940, at St Peter’s College Chapel. She was the daughter of Dr Reginald Alfred Goode, and Isabella Brackenridge, nee Hooper of Lower Mitcham.

Sangster enlisted, on 13th December 1940, he was already an officer in the CMF AAMC at the rank of captain. He named his wife as his next of kin and they he lived in Robe Terrace, Medindie. Transferred to the 2/AIF, on 1st January 1941, he was posted temporarily to 7 AGH reinforcements. Sangster embarked for the Middle East on 23rd March 1941 arriving in Dimra on 11th April 1941. He spent some time in June and July on training courses at the AAMC training wing and then was allotted to 2/2nd FdAmb from 26th July 1941.  Like many of his colleagues, he contracted sand-fly fever and evacuated to 7 AGH in September.  He returned to his unit and then was posted to 1st Aust mobile bacteriological laboratory, in November 1941.  He was informed that his daughter was born on the 23rd October 1941. Sangster left the Middle East in February 1942 and arrived back in Adelaide on 16th March 1942, where he was allotted for duty with 105 AMH. He then embarked for PNG on 14th August 1942, and during his time in PNG, he was informed that his second daughter was born on 17th April 1943. He had a short leave in Australia in June 1943, and then was posted as a physician to 2/2nd AGH on promotion to major on 6th September 1943. Sangster was evacuated to 2/12th AGH, in Australia, with pneumonia in December 1943. He served with 101 Australian Convalescence Depot, from January 1944 to May 1944. This was followed by an appointed as a physician to 121 AGH, where he remained before embarking for Morotai from Cairns, arriving on 5th April 1945. He was sent to Tarakan, an Indonesian Island just off the coast of Borneo. At this time his  son was born.  Sangster has several periods of illness during this deployment including hypertension and was evacuated to 2/1st Hospital Ship from the 29th AGH on 20th November 1945 and arrived back in Australia on 1st December 1945.  Transferred to the SA LoC, he took a refresher course in pathology, before his discharge on 7th May 1946.

After the war, Sangster, took a position as a clinical assistant medical, in the Outpatients Department at the RAH. He was a member of the AMA and had a practice on Burwood Ave, Nailsworth, SA. He was living on Robe Terrace, Medindie, SA, in the 1970s. John William Sangster died on 3rd April 1979.


Blood, Sweat and Fears III: Medical Practitioners South Australia, who Served in World War 2. 

Swain, Jelly, Verco, Summers. Open Books Howden, Adelaide 2019. 

Uploaded by Annette Summers AO RFD