Dr. Elliott Arthur BRUMMITT MiD

BRUMMITT, Elliott Arthur

Service Number: Officer
Enlisted: 4 May 1915
Last Rank: Captain
Last Unit: Medical Officers
Born: Burra, South Australia, Australia, 9 April 1880
Home Town: Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia
Schooling: Prince Alfred College, University of Adelaide
Occupation: Medical Practioner
Died: Septicaemia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia, 5 June 1934, aged 54 years
Cemetery: Mitcham Cemetery, S.A.
Memorials: Adelaide Grand Masonic Lodge WW1 Honour Board
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World War 1 Service

4 May 1915: Enlisted AIF WW1, Captain, SN Officer, Australian Army Medical Corps (AMF)
17 Jun 1915: Embarked Captain, SN Officer, 1st Australian General Hospital, HMAT Wandilla, Melbourne
17 Jun 1915: Involvement Captain, 1st Australian General Hospital
23 Dec 1916: Embarked Captain, Medical Officers, RMS Orontes, Melbourne
23 Dec 1916: Involvement Captain, Medical Officers
Date unknown: Embarked Captain, 1st Australian General Hospital
Date unknown: Involvement Captain, 1st Australian General Hospital

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Biography contributed by Sharyn Roberts

Excerpt from Blood Sweat and Fears: Medical Practitioners and Medical Students of South Australian who Served in World War 1. Courtesy of the Authors

Elliott Arthur Brummitt was born on the 9th April 1880 at Burra, South Australia. He was the eldest son of Dr Robert Brummitt who had immigrated to South Australia 1877 and Jane, nee Roach daughter of a local mill owner.  He had a very happy and unconstrained boyhood; one day, he with another boy, Essington Lewis, the future industrialist and wartime director of munitions, who offered him 5s 3d to accompany him on their ponies while they drove, a herd of cattle 20 miles in the blazing sun. He was educated at Prince Alfred College where he was in the first eighteen for 3 years and excelled as a gymnast. He studied medicine at the University of Adelaide where he had difficulty getting past the first 2 years. Family lore maintains that there was some animosity between Brummitt’s father and Professor Archibald Watson so after these failures Brummitt was sent to United Kingdom where he graduated from Edinburgh University in 1908. After training in Scotland, he commenced work at the Adelaide Children’s Hospital in 1909 and joined his father in his practice in Medindie, Gilberton and North Adelaide.

Brummitt enlisted in the AIF on 4th May 1915 He was 36 years old, single, and his mother of Medindie, Adelaide was named as his next of kin. He was 5ft 8ins, 10st 10lbs. He embarked from Melbourne on the 17th June 1915 for Egypt with the reinforcements for the 1 AGH.  He was transferred on arrival to 1 Division Reserve Park as RMO, and joined them on Lemnos on the 3rd August 1915. Back in Egypt in 1916 he was posted to the Div Train of the newly raised 5th Div, but after a month was transferred to the Karoola which was returning to Australia. On arrival in Adelaide he was retained on the staff of 4MD at the request of DGMS. This was a compassionate posting as his father had suffered a stroke.  He managed to re-embark in December 1916, and spent 4 months at the AAMC Training Depot at Parkhouse, before rejoining 1 AGH at Rouen in August 1917, with promotion to major. He was posted in September to 11 FdAmb and remained with them until the end of the war. He was twice Mentioned in Despatches, and recommended for an OBE; he has earned the respect of all owing to his single-minded and efficient care of the sick and wounded soldiers.  He has been on occasions ready to sacrifice himself for the patient. However, he was not appointed. Brummitt returned to Australia in January 1919 as SMO on the Berrima with his appointment terminated on the 13th April 1919 from the 4 MD.  Brummitt was issued with the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal and the Victory Medal with Oak Leaves.

He was physically intact and mentally well, after his return to Adelaide, although he never went to Church again. He resumed work at his father’s practice with extensive consulting and maternity work load, beginning with 15-20 house calls per day. At the age of 49 years, when he appeared to be a confirmed bachelor, at social bridge he met 33 year old, Bertha (Bon) Kay daughter of Mr and Mrs RH Kay of Marryatville, SA. They were married in January 1930 and had two sons Robert and Peter. Elliot Arthur Brummitt died within a week of getting an infected finger of septicaemia on 5th June 1934 when he was 54 years old. He was survived by his wife and two sons.