WHEELER, Richard Charlie

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Enlistment Address

Gilgandra, NSW

Service Number

5777

Unit

13th Battalion, 18th Reinforcement

Comment

Gilgandra Coo-ee

Fate

Returned to Australia October 1919

Information

Private Richard Charlie Wheeler 5777

Richard was an 18 year old labourer when he enlisted at Gilgandra on October 8, 1915 in Gilgandra. His medical examination described him as 5’ 3 1/2” tall, 9 stone (57kgs), dark hair, blue grey eyes and dark complexion. He had four faint vaccination marks and a large thick heart-shaped scar on the middle, lower abdomen. His father, Charles Wheeler, lived at 6 River Terrace, Crisp Rd, Hammersmith, London.

He marched to Sydney with the Coo-ees and trained at Liverpool with the 13th Battalion. Richard embarked on the HMAT ‘MacGillivary’ and trained in Egypt and England before arriving in France on the October 13, 1916. He was with the 13th Battalion when they saw action at Gueudecourt and Bullecourt and Messines. He had a period of sickness and was attached to the 3rd Australian General Hospital in England until August 1918, when he was once again in France for the Somme Offensive and the end of the war.

When he returned to Australia in October 1919 on the ‘Benalla’ he brought his wife with him. He had married Rose Gertrude Winifred Parsons on the July 9, 1919 at Willesden, Middlesex in the Parish Church of Harlesden. She was a 19 year old spinster of 23 Acton Lane, Harlesden; daughter of George Henry Parsons, a glass painter. Richards’ address was 6 River Terrace, Queens St Hammersmith.

His discharge is dated February 7, 1920. He received the Victory Medal and the British War Medal and is commemorated on the Coo-ee Memorial Gateway.