The AIF Project

Edward John WILLIAMS

Regimental number1344
Place of birthLondon, England
ReligionChurch of England
Address53 Lower Fort Street, Sydney, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation34
Height5' 6.25"
Weight130 lbs
Next of kinNone
Previous military serviceServed for 12 years in the East Surrey Regiment (time expired).
Enlistment date22 February 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll20 February 1915
Place of enlistmentLiverpool, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name19th Battalion, D Company
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT Ceramic on 25 June 1915
Rank from Nominal RollSergeant
Unit from Nominal Roll19th Battalion
Other details from Roll of Honour CircularMarried after embarkation. Wife: Mrs B.E. WILLIAMS, 8 Albert Street, Portland, Dorset, England.
FateKilled in Action 21 September 1917
Age at death from cemetery records33
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 23), Belgium

The Menin Gate Memorial (so named because the road led to the town of Menin) was constructed on the site of a gateway in the eastern walls of the old Flemish town of Ypres, Belgium, where hundreds of thousands of allied troops passed on their way to the front, the Ypres salient, the site from April 1915 to the end of the war of some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

The Memorial was conceived as a monument to the 350,000 men of the British Empire who fought in the campaign. Inside the arch, on tablets of Portland stone, are inscribed the names of 56,000 men, including 6,178 Australians, who served in the Ypres campaign and who have no known grave.

The opening of the Menin Gate Memorial on 24 July 1927 so moved the Australian artist Will Longstaff that he painted 'The Menin Gate at Midnight', which portrays a ghostly army of the dead marching past the Menin Gate. The painting now hangs in the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, at the entrance of which are two medieval stone lions presented to the Memorial by the City of Ypres in 1936.

Since the 1930s, with the brief interval of the German occupation in the Second World War, the City of Ypres has conducted a ceremony at the Memorial at dusk each evening to commemorate those who died in the Ypres campaign.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Edward John and Gertride WILLIAMS; husband of Beatrice Ethel WILLIAMS, 8 Albert Terrace, Portland, Dorset, England. Native of London, England
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Proceeded to join Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 16 August 1915. Promoted Sergeant, 17 August 1915. Wounded in action, 16 October 1915 (bomb wound, left eye, right arm and leg); admitted to 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station,16 October 1915; to HS 'Delta', 16 October 1915; to No. 1 Australian General Hospital, Heliopolis, 20 October 1915; to No. 3 Auxiliary Hospital, Heliopolis, 16 November 1915; taken on strength, 5th Training Bn, Tel el Kebir, 30 April 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 10 May 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 17 May 1916. Taken on strength, 19th Bn, 7 July 1916.

Admitted to 13th General Hospital, 11 July 1916 (old injury, left foot); transferred to England, 12 July 1916; admitted to 2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester,13 July 1916; discharged, 28 July 1916, to report to AIF Headquarters for furlough. Marched in to No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs, 29 August 1916; transferred to No. 2 Command Depot, Weymouth, 31 August 1918; to 5th Training Bn, 26 September 1916. Proceeded overseas to France,30 July 1917; rejoined Bn, France, 18 August 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 21 September 1917.

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

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