The AIF Project

Harold KAY

Regimental number1159
Place of birthElsecar, Barnsley, Yorkshire, England
Age on arrival in Australia18
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationPlumber
AddressBoolaroo, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 5.25"
Weight136 lbs
Next of kinFather, Henry Kay, Elsecar, Barnsley, Yorkshire, England
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date1 March 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll21 February 1916
Place of enlistmentNewcastle, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name36th Battalion, D Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/53/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A72 Beltana on 13 May 1916
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll36th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 12 October 1917
Age at death23
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 25), 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
127
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Sydney, 13 May 1916; disembarked Devonport, England, 9 July 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France, 29 November 1916.

Appointed Lance Corporal, 12 June 1917.

Admitted to 11th Australian Field Ambulance, 15 July 1917 (dental); discharged to duty, 22 July 1917; rejoined Bn, in the field, 30 July 1917.

On leave to England, 9 September 1917; rejoined Bn from leave, 24 September 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium,12 October 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, KAY Harold

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