|Place of birth||Tambar Springs New South Wales|
|School||Grass Tree Vale Public School, Tambar Springs, New South Wales|
|Address||Tambar Springs, New South Wales|
|Age at embarkation||21|
|Next of kin||Father, W J Best, Franklin, Gunnedah, New South Wales|
|Previous military service||Served 2 years in the Gunnedah Cadets, New South Wales.|
|Rank on enlistment||Private|
|Unit name||33rd Battalion, C Company|
|AWM Embarkation Roll number||23/50/1|
|Embarkation details||Unit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A74 Marathon on
|Rank from Nominal Roll||Private|
|Unit from Nominal Roll||33rd Battalion|
|Recommendations (Medals and Awards)||
Work near Hamel on 8 August 1918.
|Fate||Killed in Action
|Place of death or wounding||Proyart, near Peronne, France|
|Date of death|
|Age at death||24|
|Age at death from cemetery records||22|
|Place of burial||No known grave|
|Commemoration details||Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France
Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.
The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.
On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.
After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.
|Panel number, Roll of Honour,|
Australian War Memorial
|Miscellaneous information from|
|Commemortaed in St Joseph's Catholic Churxch (Stations of the Cross 9: presented by Mrs BEST in memory), Gunnedah, New South Wales. Parents: William John and Mary Agnes BEST, 'Frank Lynne', Gunneldah, New South Wales. Born at Tambar Springs|
'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty during operations against enemy positions south of the SOMME east of HAMMEL on 8th August, 1918. Sergeant BEST led his party which was temporarily cut off from the rest of the Company owing to the dense fog, through ACCROCHE WOOD with great skill and dash. Twice he rushed enemy strong points, killing two men and capturing 12. With only one man he rushed a post in RAT WOOD and captured the garrison of 6 men. Throughout the operation this non commissioned officer displayed initiative and determination and led his men with splendid courage and dash. He also did very good work in the reorganisation and consolidation.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 61
|Family/military connections||Brother: 1259 Pte Thomas Patrick BEST, 1st Anzac Bn, Imperial Camel Corps, returned to Australia, 11 July 1917.|
War service: Western FrontMedals: Military Medal, British War Medal, Victory Medal