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  • Statement, 2878 Corporal E.E. POULTER, B Company, 60th Bn, 29 January 1917: 'The last time I saw him was in No Man's Land about 150 yds. from our line. He was shot through the side and the bullet evidently lodged in his stomach as he doubled up and fell. We could not hold the ground. We went over with 1100 men and 63 men answered the roll call.'
  • Red Cross File No 2940705 has statements 4226 Pte L. HANNA, B Company, 54th Bn (former prisoner of war), 30 December 1918: 'On morning of 20th July 1916 at Fleurbaix I was alongside him when he was shot dead by sniper. Hit in Head (eye). We were then in Enemy's second line trench. They got in behind us into their 1st line and we were cut off. I was hit through helmet by same man immediately after but not hurt. We were taken Prisoners of War about 1 hour later. His body would be left in trench. I did not know his Christian name.' 3511A W.D. CARR, 54th Bn, 24 December 1918: 'In the morning between 8 and 9 o'clock I saw him assisting [1909 H.W.] Bilbow with a machine gun - when he was shot through the right eye either by sniper or machine gun bullet - not shrapnel, as he was killed instantly. It was in a quickly dug trench. We were captured shortly afterwards, so I know nothing as to his burial.' 1909 Lance Corporal W.H. BILLOW (sic), 13 January 1919: 'He was not killed going over the trenches but after he got over in the Germans' second line on the morning of the 20th. I was standing shoulder to shoulder with him up to the moment he was killed. He was hot by a sniper from behind, the bullet passing through his head. He had been working all night with me, trying to build up the trenches. It happened at Fleurbaix ... I took his paybook and his identification disc and was forced to give them up to the Germans with my own paybook.' 1841 S. TONKINS, 54th Bn, 28 August 1917: 'Pte Wildman was killed by shrapnel, I saw him lying dead on the ground in the German trenches, on July 20th at Armentieres.'
  • Red Cross File No 1420704 Statements from witnesses: 2818 J. ELLIOTT, 56th Bn, 6 November 1916: 'He came from Bathurst, N.S. Wales, and was buried in a cemetery between Sailly and Estairs, Bac-St.-Maur Road. I saw his grave there.' (this seems incongruous given his remains were recovered from the Pheasant Wood site) 3330 Pte P.G. HUGHES (patient, 23rd General Hospital, Etaples), 6 November 1916: 'James was killed by shell: I did not see it happen but I saw him lying afterwards. I think he was buried at the top of Pinney's Avenue in the cemetery.' 2780 Lance Corporal B.H. PHILLIPS, 56th Bn, '[2705 C.W.] Johnston was a L.M. Gunner and James was in A. Company. We made an attack on the 19th and were driven back to our own lines, and these two and three others were killed by the same shell in our trench. James' head was practically blown off. I - a stretcher bearer - was on the next bay and was called in. James and Johnston were both taken out and buried in a Cemetery behind the lines. I think the cemetery at the mouth of "V.C. Avenue" near Fleurbaix. I knew Johnston very well indeed, but James not so well.' 1704 Pte G.W. MURRAY, 56th Bn (patient, 9th General Hospital, Rouen), 16 November 1916: 'I saw this man killed by a piece of shell hitting him on the head on the 20th July near Fromelles. I heard afterwards that he was buried.' Originally listed as 'No Known Grave' and commemorated at V.C. Corner Australian Cemetery, Fromelles; subsequently (2010) identified, and interred in the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery, France.
  • From Sydney's diary, his Battalion relieved the 19th Batttalion on Thursday 21 March but he gave no indication of location. Referral to the War Diaries of the 7th Brigade held by the Australian War Memorial indicate they were in camp at Canteen Corner and moved into the line near the villages of Romarin and Kortepyp just inside the Belgian border with France. The entry for Tuesday 26 March, their 2nd in the front line, stated it was 'very lively. Fritz shooting bombs nearly all night. Had to fall back for a while'. On Saturday 30 March Sydney recorded 'Fritz's plane bought by gunfire fell about 300 years from my dugout. Officer taken prisoner'. Sydney then tell that he 'went out with patrol. Spent several hours in no mans land. Very wet and got into swamp on the bank of the River Lys. No sign of Fritz so came in again. Wet through and mud up to knees'. On Tuesday 2 April Sydney recorded it was their 12th day in the line and that the Battalion was relieved by the South Lancashires from the Somme. Following the diary entries, the 26th Battalion spent the night in a camp and on Wednesday 3 April moved to Meteren en route for the Somme. On Thursday 4 April they left Meteren for Caestre 'to load gear on trains working all night'. Sydney records 'it was very wet and slushy'. They left Caestre at 6 am on Friday 5 April arriving in Amiens at 8 pm. Then then marched to Allonville where the spent the night. The next day they marched to La Neuville which Sydney described as 'a small village, left in a hurry by the population as everything was left behind, even cows and a few tame rabbits in out billet'. On Sunday 7 April the Battalion marched to Baizieux to spend some days in support. Sydney states there were 'no billets and have to put up this time in the trench and there are no places to shelter anyway'. On Thursday 11 April Sydney recorded that '3 Hun planes brought down by gun fire. Had no time to go over and see as we were ready to move up the line'. Friday 12 April was the Battalions 'first night in the front line about 4 miles from Albert. Very quiet. Heavy bombardment on our left but nothing our way'. On Friday 19 April Sydney recorded that they were at Franvillers having 'moved back a couple of miles for a couple of days spell. Living in holes in the side of a hill. Light fall of snow during the day. Very cold'. He comments on the 'terrible scarcity for matches' and then on Monday 22 April says he 'heard there were matches at Heilly about 3 miles away. Walked over and managed to get 4 boxes. Going up in line tonight on fatigue'. Wednesday 24 April saw them back in the front line from 11 pm. On 26 April they 'bombarded Fritz's trench with mortars. Knocked out his machine guns'. they were relieved from the front line on Monday 29 April, went into support for a day and then were 'marched out for a couple of days spell'. They were back in reserve on Saturday 4 May and 'had to dig bivies to camp for the night. Dug into bank alongside a railway. 9.2 gun on line shaking hell out of us'. On Friday 10 May Sydney and his mates left for the line arriving 4 pm and went into reserves. Again they had to build bivies, this time in the trench. Sydney records that they went into reserves near Ribemont and 'met my old friend the Queensland mosquito'. He also comments 'I think all the vermin in the world is around this part, not including Huns'. Compiled by Ian Cousens
  • From the 7th Brigade diaries, the 26th Battalion were back in line at Frenchcourt on 14/15 June. When an inspection was carried out at Frenchcourt on 20 June the Battalion consisted of 40 officers and 867 other ranks. They were described as being very smart. Returning to Sydney's dairy, he recorded on Thursday 27 June that they 'took over line at Villers-Bretonneux. D Company in reserve for 10 days living in dugout. Trey Bon'. It was Friday 12 July before they were 'sent out of the line for a rest'. He must have been back in the line on Wednesday 17 July as he noted that the 'Brits hopped over, took Fritz's line, went about 1500 yards and that 'D Coy had 40 odd casualties, 3 killed'. Saturday 20 July was the 4th Brigade Sports and Sydney noted that he 'met half Toowoomba' and names eight people. That was the last entry Sydney made in his diary. Compiled by Ian Cousens
  • Sydney's diary entries cease on 20 July. From the War Diaries of the 7th Brigade held by the Australian War Memorial, the 26th Battalion was in reserve at Glisy and Blangy from 1 August before moving up into the line on 7 August. On 8 August the Battle of Amiens commenced with an attack launched at 4.20 am. The 26th Battalion, working with a section of tanks, was on the right flank and were to advance along the north side of the railway line towards Marcelcave. Objectives ironically included Card Copse where Sydney was initially buried. Reports state there was heavy fog and visibility was restricted to 10 yards for about 2 hours. A large number of casualties were due to men being caught in their own rolling barrage. From reports in the Australian Red Cross Society Wounded and Missing Enquiry Bureau Files, Sydney was in D Coy and died instantaneously after being hit by pieces of a shell. Pte H Webley 6167 of B Coy 26th Battalion stated 'Casualty happened in the morning of 8-8-18 just after the hop over when still in action'. Pte Webley was wounded by the same shell. Sydney was initially buried on the 9th August in Card Copse British Cemetery one mile North West of Marcelcave before being re-interred in Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery on 31st March 1920. Sydney is also commemorated on the Mothers Memorial in East Creek Park and the Soldiers Memorial Hall, both in Toowoomba. Sydney's younger brother, Stanley Clifford Cousens #816 15th Battalion also served in WW1 and was killed in action on 9th August 1916 two years earlier at Pozieres. Compiled by Ian Cousens
  • On the evening of 14th July 1944, with the D Day invasion in full swing, a massive air effort was being mounted to disrupt German transport links. Having taken off from Binbrock (Lincolnshire-UK) on July 14, 1944, around 9:38 pm, for a bombing mission on the Révigny-sur-Ornain (Meuse) railroad, Lancaster ME755 AR-Z was shot down by a night fighter on the 15th. July 1944 around 02:05, near Chevillon Haute Marne in eastern France.. Only two crew members managed to escape: F / Sgt Brian Francis RAFTERY, Wireless Operator, RAAF, Sgt David WADE, AIr Gunner, of the RAF. The rest died in the crash and are buried at Chevillon Communal Cemetery. ALLAN, ALEXANDER, Sergeant, 562335, RAFVR, Flight Engineer, DICKERSON, KEVIN LESLIE THOMAS, Flight Sergeant, 421578, RAAF, Age 20, Bomb Aimer JEFFRIES, FREDERICK, Flight Sergeant, 1323904, RAFVR, Age 33, Navigator KILSBY, HORACE SIDNEY, Sergeant, 1575038, RAFVR, Age 21, Air Gunner VAUGHAN, WILLIAM ALAN HENRY, Pilot Officer, 421774, RAAF, Age 25, Pilot
  • 'On 4th October, 1917, during the operations on BROODSEINDE RIDGE east of YPRES. The attack commenced at 6am October 4, 1917 after rain commenced falling the day before. Coincidentally, the Germans planned an attack for exactly the same time. At 5.20am the German artillery opened up and then at 6am the Australian artillery started, both in preparation for impending attacks. After both troops emerged from their trenches to commence attacking to their surprise they found the enemy doing exactly the same. The Australians managed to recover from the shock quicker than their opponents as the Australian machine gunners opened up and cut the German lines to pieces. The Germans broke and the Australians managed to capture the ridge. The triumph at Broodseinde presented the Allied High Command with an opportunity, perhaps in the upcoming spring, of breaking the German hold. Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 31 Date: 7 March 1918
  • Ventura AE937 took off from RAF Methwold at 07:35 hours on 13 June 1943 to carry out a raid on the viaduct at St Brieuc, France. Twelve aircraft from the Squadron took part in the raid and AE937 failed to return. The Squadron aircraft were accompanied by five Squadrons of fighters. Low level was maintained by the formation to a point of climb when seven-tenths cloud caused the mission to be abandoned. A few minutes before five separate attacks were made from the rear on the second box resulting in AE937 being shot down. Another aircraft was badly shot up with both gunners being wounded. One other machine with a burst tyre crashed on landing but there were no injuries. All the other Squadron returned safely. Crew: RAAF 405357 WO N A P Kane-Maguire, Captain (Pilot) RAF Flt Sgt J Lawson, (Navigator) RAF Flt Sgt E W Goodheart, (Wireless Air Gunner) RAAF 412004 Flt Sgt A J Galley, (Air Gunner)
  • Writing to his mother from the Ninth Training Battalion, Fovant, Wiltshire, early in February, Corporal Carl Klaus says : — I have had a pretty rough time of did not get a crack. I have been it the last 15 months in France, but turned over a lew times with concussion, but got over it alright. I've seen some rotten sights. Poor old Jack Morgan was Killed at Messines. I suppose you have heard all about that. Our Battalion was right in the thick of it. The first time I ever handled a dead man was at Messines -— I had to help a couple of other chaps to dig George Weatherstone and Jack Morgan out. The dugout was blown in on top of them. And again at Ypres poor old Harry Mallam was killed right alongside of me. I had to lift him out of the line and bury him in a shell hole, as it was too far to take him back to a cemetery. Just took his pay book and private belongings and gave them in to our platoon officer. I suppose you read about the battle of Passchendaele. We were the ring-leaders of that turnout. With the assistance of the Canadians we took the hill about a kilometre from Passchendaele, and the Canadians hopped in and took the town, so now we have nearly all the high ground in Belgium in our hands, and have Fritz in the hollow and chopping hell out of him. Have more artillery behind us now than ever they had before on the western front. In this stunt Bill Eliem was killed and Percy Fisher was wounded. I have met Paddy Lulham, Bert Daley, Stan Tyler from Wardell, and all the old lads of 1st-41st that went away to the Ninth Battalion. They were all doing well until the Ypres stunt, when Jim McDonald from Broadwater was killed, Paddy wounded, Tyler wounded, while Fitzpatrick lost his eye and is going home, and of course Don Livingstone is home long ago. Bert Daley, is still going strong, and looks splendid. I saw him a couple of days before I left France. I am likely to be in England for a six months spell from shell fire anyway, but I suppose there will be plenty work attached to it just the same. Still it will do me. They told me when I left France that they were giving me six months in this Training Battalion at Fovant. I have met Clarrie Fredericks, he is in the 8th of the 41st, and soon will be going over to France. He is training to be a signaller. I also had tho pleasure of meeting another old mate that I went to school with under Mr. Bath, that was Tom Grant from Woodburn. He is a corporal in the 25th Battalion, has been wounded twice, and now they have sent him over to the training battalion for a few months. He is in the 10th, but he is not far away from us. Writing to his brother Rupert, Corporal Klaus says : — I see where the girls are getting married. I don t know how I am going to get on when I go back, there will be none left for me, and I don't like the idea of picking one up here in England to take back like some of them are doing. Well, old Fritz could not get me with his old scrap iron, so instead of giving me fourteen days furlough in London they have sent me here to the 9th Training Battalion for six months. I have seen some rough work over there, not only in the fighting, but rotten weather conditions. Last winter was bitterly cold. All the rivers were frozen up; boats could not work at all, and in some places in Belgium I have seen a foot of snow, and had to carry on through it all backwards and forwards to the trenches, but of course we were only holding the line at that time at Armentieres. We were there about four months, and then we shifted down lower to a place called La Pisset, and from there to Messines. I suppose you have read about the battle of Messines. We were holding the line at Messines right up till the morning of the hop-over. Our brigade was not really in the hop-over, but to my idea we had worse, because we had to do all the carrying parties (after the 9th and 10th Brigades took their objectives) under heavy shell fire all the time — day and night. From there we went down to Ypres in October, and the 11th Brigade was in the battle of Passchendaele. I was right in the thick of it. That is where poor old Bill Eilem (brother of Tom of the Bee-Hive) was killed, and Harry Mallam from Bungawalbin. We had a good possy made, well sand-bagged, and were waiting for the Tommies to relieve us the night after the push, but old Fiitz must have taken a tumble that there was a relief on, and barraged hell out of us for about two hours — Harry Mallam, Ben Hall and another chap I don't know were killed outright by a shell which lobbed right on the parados of the trench. I don't know how I escaped, for I was not above two yards from them, but I was round a bend of the trench. I think what saved me was the ground being soft and the shell, did not scatter much. The three chaps that were killed were huddled up together taking shelter. When Jack Morgan and George Weatherstone were buried at Messines we had to dig them out, for the dugout was blown in on top of them. Jack did not have a mark on the outside of his body, but the concussion killed him. Weatherstone hailed from the Clarence, but we were mates from the time we left Brisbane. He was smashed to pieces.
  • For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during operations against enemy positions south of the SOMME east of HAMEL on 8th August, 1918. Corporal SEE, with his section, stormed a strong point in ACCROCHE WOOD and succeeded in killing four and capturing 16 of the enemy. He led his section close to the barrage and on reaching RAT WOOD cooperated in the capture of a battery of 4.2's which had been firing point blank, killing a gunner and capturing 7 others. With his section he captured altogether 27 prisoners. Throughout Corporal SEE displayed courage, energy, determination and leadership, and greatly inspired his men.' Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 61
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=8211537
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=3445699
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-symons-of-south-australia
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/resource-library/letter-from-lone-pine
  • https://nominal-rolls.dva.gov.au/veteran?id=1040023&c=WW2#R
  • http://www.625squadron.org/associnfo/about.pdf
  • https://s3-ap-southeast-2.amazonaws.com/awm-media/collection/RCDIG1067906/document/5484782.PDF
  • http://aircrewremembered.com/coleman-gerald.html
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-first-conscription-referendum
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMAS_Australia_(D84)
  • http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article70790632
  • https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/R1946739
  • https://johnknifton.com/tag/avro-lancaster/
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/a-tale-of-two-soldiers
  • https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/page/1085947
  • https://vwma.org.au/research/home-page-archives/mystery-of-the-black-cat
  • http://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=3453704
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=4456995
  • http://www.aircrewremembered.com/bell-maxwell-heron.html
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/diary-of-a-destroyer
  • http://www.northlincsweb.net/UlcebyWarMemorial/html/lancaster_crash.html
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=3554428
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-australasian-soldiers-dardanelles-cenotaph
  • https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2017/sep/29/us-museum-under-fire-over-display-of-skull-of-australian-soldier
  • http://aircrewremembered.com/taylor-james-william.html
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-worst-day-in-australian-military-history
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/malaya-borneo-veterans-day
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=8076035
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=8021060&S=1&R=0
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  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=3212570
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-south-australian-red-cross-information-bureau
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=8077561
  • http://aircrewremembered.com/hodgkinson-victor.html
  • https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=7998389
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/rsl-sa-turns-100-today
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/the-wounds-we-do-not-see
  • https://rslvirtualwarmemorial.org.au/research/home-page-archives/first-track
  • http://korean-war.commemoration.gov.au/armed-forces-in-korea/royal-australian-navy-in-the-korean-war.php

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