SMITH, William

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Enlistment Address

Newtown, Gilgandra, NSW

Service Number

4602

Unit

30th Battalion, 12th Reinforcement

Comment

Gilgandra, NSW

Fate

Returned to Australia 4.9.1919

Information

Private William Smith 4602

William Smith was a 21 year old grocer of Gilgandra when he enlisted with the Coo-ees. His first attestation by Captain Nicholas was at Stuart Town, NSW on October 20, 1915. He served for three months and was discharged due to sickness. He then re-joined at Dubbo on November 1, 1916. The medical examination described him as 5’8” tall, 139lbs (63kgs), dark complexion, grey eyes, dark brown hair and his religion, Presbyterian.

He embarked at Sydney on the ‘Beltana’ on November 25, 1916 and arrived at Devonport, England on January 29 1917. For most of 1917 he was in England attending training and in hospital being treated for sickness and convalescing. He arrived in France to join the 56th Battalion in December 1917 where he spent the winter. In late March 1918 the battalion moved to defend the sector around Corbie and north of Villers-Bretonneux. In September and October the 56th Battalion was involved in the capture of Peronne in September and in the battle of St Quenton Canal. They were resting away from the front when the Armistice was declared on November 11 1918.

In December 1918 he was admitted sick to hospital and then transported back to England on the Hospital Ship ‘St Patrick’. He spent the remainder of his time in England in hospital and convalescence around Bulford and Parkhouse.

William returned to Australia on the transport ship ‘Priedrichsruh’, arriving in Sydney on September 4, 1919 and he was discharged on October 12, 1919.

He received the Victory Medal and the British War Medal. Replacement medals were sent to him per Gilgandra District Hospital on May 18, 1959.

William is commemorated on the Coo-ee Memorial Gateway and the Gilgandra Honor Roll.