The AIF Project

Waldemar Robert HAWKES

Regimental number550
Place of birthMoringa, South Australia
SchoolQueens School, North Adelaide, South Australia
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationStation overseer
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation20
Height5' 8.5"
Weight158 lbs
Next of kinFather, Waldemar Gaskell Hawkes, Koonoona Station, Burra, South Australia
Previous military serviceServed in the Cadets for 18 months, and in the 23rd Light Horse for 18 months.
Enlistment date27 October 1914
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll27 October 1914
Place of enlistmentAdelaide, South Australia
Rank on enlistmentLance Corporal
Unit name9th Light Horse Regiment, Machine Gun Section
AWM Embarkation Roll number10/14/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board Transport A10 Karroo on 11 February 1915
Regimental number from Nominal RollCommissioned
Rank from Nominal Roll2nd Lieutenant
Unit from Nominal Roll2nd Machine Gun Battalion
Promotions

2nd Lieutenant


Promotion date: 28 February 1917

Lieutenant


Promotion date: 6 September 1917

FateKilled in Action 29 October 1917
Place of death or woundingPasschendaele, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death23
Age at death from cemetery records22
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 31), 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
178
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Waldemar and Isabella HAWKES, Koonoona, Kooringa, South Australia
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Proceeded to join Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 16 May 1915.

Wounded in action [date not recorded]; disembarked Malta from 'Itonus', 13 August 1915 (gun shot wound, right chest, neck and arm); admitted to Tigne hospital, 14 August 1915; transferred to England, 23 August 1915. Embarked England to rejoin MEF, 25 March 1916; taken on strength, 3rd Training Bn, Tel el Kebir, Egypt, 12 April 1916.

Admitted to No 2 Australian Stationary Hospital, 9 May 1916 (mumps); discharge date not recorded.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 29 May 1916; disembarked Plymouth, England (date not recorded). Wounded in action, 18 November 1916 (gun shot wound, right thigh); admitted to No. 6 General Hospital, Rouen, 20 November 1916; transferred to England, 22 November 1916, and admitted to 1st Southern General Hospital, 23 November 1916. discharged, 29 December 1916, and granted furlough to report to No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs, 13 January 1917.

Proceeded overseas to France, 4 August 1917; taken on strength, 21st Machine Gun Company, 12 August 1917.

Promoted Lt, 6 September 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 29 October 1917. Buried Belgian Battery Corner Military Cemetery, 1 mile south west of Ypres. Individual graves not subsequently identified.

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

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