CAHILL, Arthur

Service Numbers: 5422, V12466
Enlisted: 1 January 1915, Melbourne, Victoria
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 115 General Hospital (AMF)
Born: Brunswick, Victoria, 6 June 1890
Home Town: Stawell, Northern Grampians, Victoria
Schooling: Collingwood State School
Occupation: Farmer
Died: Natural causes (carcinoma), Melbourne, Victoria, 6 December 1958, aged 68 years
Cemetery: Preston Public Cemetery, Victoria
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World War 1 Service

1 Jan 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 5422, Melbourne, Victoria
16 Oct 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 5422, 2nd Field Ambulance, HMAT Port Lincoln, Melbourne
16 Oct 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 5422, 2nd Field Ambulance, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
18 Sep 1918: Honoured Military Medal, "The Last Hundred Days", Conspicuous courage and devotion to duty under fire
4 Aug 1919: Discharged AIF WW1, Private, SN 5422, 3rd Field Ambulance

World War 2 Service

26 Mar 1941: Enlisted Citizen Military Forces (CMF) / Militia - WW2, Private, SN V12466, Royal Park, Victoria
11 Feb 1947: Discharged Citizen Military Forces (CMF) / Militia - WW2, Private, SN V12466, 115 General Hospital (AMF)

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

Biography contributed by Denise Pianta

Arthur was born to 16 yr old Mary Ellen Cahill, a domestic servant, in Brunswick Vic. on June 6th 1890. His father abandoned Mary Ellen before Arthur was born and a warrant was issued for the father's arrest for abandonment. At the age of 20 months he was committed into care at the Children's Depot from where he was fostered four days later. 

He seems to have lived in the same foster home until he was almost 16 and was then sent to a farm at Greendale to work as a farmhand and subsequently on to other farms until he signed up for WW1 at the age of 25 in 1915.

Little is known of Arthur's early years. He informed most people that he was an orphan who grew up in an orphanage, never mentioning that he was fostered. He may have known his biological mother because he spoke of her and the circumstances of his birth to at least one of his five children.

Arthur met his first wife, Emma Johnson, whilst working on a farm where she also worked. After signing up for the 1st WW they maintained contact throughout and married shortly after he returned home. They went on to have two daughters and three sons.

Tragedy struck the family in 1942 when his  first born son, Reg, died at 19 from scepticemia caused by a ruptured appendix. On the same day, three hours later, his broken hearted 52 year old wife Emma  suddenly died too. Arthur was on leave from  the duties of ww2 to be with his ill son. The shock and despair the family endured at this time must have been terrible.

Arthur married again about 6 years later. His wife Eileen was a warm and caring woman.

I am Arthur's first grandchild, born to his second daughter. I knew Arthur and Eileen well as they visited often and I will never forget my Grandfather's happy , cheerful nature. He showed great love for his family and his cheerfulness, witicisms and practical jokes were a joy to be around. His happy demeanor certainly belied the sadness and hardships he had faced earlier.

He was a wonderful. funny, caring man who was loved and highly thought of by many.

R.I.P my darling Grandfather. I will never forget you.