Thomas George BELL

BELL, Thomas George

Service Number: 905
Enlisted: 20 August 1914, Enlisted at Melbourne
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 6th Infantry Battalion
Born: Traralgon, Victoria, Australia, 1895
Home Town: Lakes Entrance, East Gippsland, Victoria
Schooling: Cuninghame School, Victoria, Australia
Occupation: Telephonist
Died: Killed in Action, Gallipoli, Gallipoli, Dardanelles, Turkey, 25 April 1915
Cemetery: Lone Pine Cemetery, ANZAC
Row O, Grave 13 Headstone inscription reads: Death cannot long divide, Lone Pine Cemetery, Gallipoli Peninsula, Canakkale Province, Turkey
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Hawthorn Postmaster General's Department Victoria 1, Lakes Entrance WW1 Memorial, Lakes Entrance and District War Memorial, Postmaster General's Department Victoria 2
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World War 1 Service

20 Aug 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, 905, 6th Infantry Battalion, Enlisted at Melbourne
19 Oct 1914: Involvement Private, 905, 6th Infantry Battalion, ANZAC / Gallipoli
19 Oct 1914: Embarked Private, 905, 6th Infantry Battalion, HMAT Hororata, Melbourne

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

Biography contributed by Carol Foster

Son of William Blakey Bell and Georgina Bell nee Beattie of Lakes Entrance, Victoria formerly of Cunninghame, Victoria

Signaller Thomas George Bell, second son of Mr. and Mrs. W. B. Bell, Lakes Entrance, was killed in action at the Dardanelles. He was born at Traralgon and was 20 years of age. As a boy, he attended the Cuninghame school. Shortly after leaving school he joined the Post and Telegraph department, and was employed in the Cuninghame post office. He quickly obtained promotion, and was transferred to Melbourne. When the war broke out, he was amongst the first to volunteer, and was enrolled in tlhe signalling corps of the sixth battalion, the same in which Private A. Harbeck was enrolled. Like the latter, he had undergone strenuous preparation, and was in good health at the time of his last writing to his parents, soon after reaching the firing line. Very sincere sympathy is felt for the sorrowing family in their sad trial. Flags were flown at half-mast at Lakes Entrance on Wednesday, as a token of respect. Of such fine soldiers as Privates Harbeck and Bell it may well be said, "They fell devoted, but undying."

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal


Biography contributed by Stephen Brooks

Thomas Bell, as a boy, attended school at Cunninghame before joining the Post and Telegraph Department and was employed at the Cunninghame Post Office.  He trained as a telephonist and was promoted to Melbourne. He was one of the earliest to volunteer and enrolled in the signalling corps of the 6th Battalion. A mate at the front with Bell told the father Thomas was killed in the second engagement at the Dardanelles on 25 April 1915. Thomas's father died during 1919.

Thomas’s remains were found at Gallipoli during 1922, and they were interred at the Lone Pine Cemetery that year and his identity disc was sent to the family during December 1922. 

It was noted by Base Records in 1926, that the mother of Thomas George Bell had changed his age at death to 19 years and 11 months on an entry form but it was noted that by the Captain Base Records that the soldier on enlistment stated his age to be 21 years 3 months. He merely pointed out that it was too late to change his headstone or cemetery memorial records.

Thomas is shown on birth records to have been born in 1895 so his age was in all probability 19 years.

His older brother, 3239 Pte. Algernon Francis Bell 59th Battalion AIF, died of wounds inflicted at Fromelles on the 24 July, 1916.