James Thomas WILKERSON

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WILKERSON, James Thomas

Service Number: 71
Enlisted: 6 October 1914, Guildford, Western Australia
Last Rank: Trooper
Last Unit: 10th Light Horse Regiment
Born: Toodyay, Western Australia, December 1895
Home Town: Toodyay, Toodyay, Western Australia
Schooling: Toodyay Public School and Guildford Grammar School
Occupation: Farm labourer
Died: Killed in Action, Gallipoli, 7 August 1915
Cemetery: Baby 700 Cemetery, Anzac
Memorials: Australian War Memorial, Roll of Honour, Guildford Grammar School War Memorial, Northam Fallen, Northam Memorial Hospital
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World War 1 Service

6 Oct 1914: Enlisted AIF WW1, Private, SN 71, Guildford, Western Australia
8 Feb 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 71, 10th Light Horse Regiment, Enlistment/Embarkation WW1
8 Feb 1915: Embarked AIF WW1, Private, SN 71, 10th Light Horse Regiment, HMAT Mashobra, Fremantle
16 May 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Private, SN 71, 10th Light Horse Regiment, 'ANZAC' / Gallipoli
7 Aug 1915: Involvement AIF WW1, Trooper, SN 71, 10th Light Horse Regiment, The August Offensive - Lone Pine, Suvla Bay, Sari Bair, The Nek and Hill 60 - Gallipoli

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Biography contributed by John Edwards

"James Wilkerson was born in 1895, the son of Charles Henry and Ellen Wilkerson of Toodyay. He was one of ten children. His father had died in 1909. James attended the School for one year in 1910 as a Boarder. At the time of enrolment James mother was listed as living in Newcastle.

James was a member of the 1st XVIII Football team and the Athletics team. In the Football Characters listed in the December 1910 Swan it was noted James played Full Back. He was described as being “A slow but solid player. Should pay attention to his practice. Showed fine form in last few matches. Good kick, fair mark”. Guildford won four matches and lost four for the season.
At the Annual Athletics Sports Day James took part in the U/16 High Jump, taking out equal first place with a height of 4 foot 7 and one half inches. He also took part in the Donkey Race and came second in the U/14 Mile. In the Interschool Sports competition which was held on 26th November James placed equal second in the U/16 High Jump. The Swan reported “We did not do very well, though our representatives did their very best, and thus enabled us to improve upon our disgraceful performance in 1909”.

James joined the A Squadron, 10th Light Horse on 6th October 1914 with the rank of private and trained at the Guildford Depot. He was described as being 5 feet 8 inches tall, weighed 158 pounds with a fresh complexion, blue eyes and brown hair. He had a scar on the front of his right thigh. His occupation was given as farmer. James embarked for Gallipoli from Alexandria on 16th May 1915 along with fellow Old Guildfordians Gresley and Wilfred Harper, Bob Lukin, and Vernon Piesse. All fell at the infamous charge at the Nek on 7th August 1915. James was aged 19." - SOURCE (www.ggs.wa.edu.au)

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