The AIF Project

Sidney Watkins MADIGAN

Regimental number1749
Place of birthTalbot, Victoria
ReligionChurch of England
AddressGolden Point, Chewton, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation20
Height5' 5.5"
Weight137 lbs
Next of kinFather, Edward Madigan, Golden Point, Chewton, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed for 1 year in the 66th Bn, Citizen Military Forces, Castlemaine.
Enlistment date15 May 1915
Place of enlistmentChewton, Victoria
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name23rd Battalion, 2nd Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/40/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A64 Demosthenes on 16 July 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll23rd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 7 October 1917
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
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Proceeded to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 30 August 1915.

Admitted to 6th Australian Field Ambulance, Anzac, 6 October 1915 (impetigo), and transferred to 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station, and thence to HS 'Caledonian'; admitted to General Hospital, Gibraltar, 15 October 1915; transferred to England, 6 December 1915, and admitted to 3rd London General Hospital, 10 December 1915.

Admitted to Rochester Row Hospital, 29 January 1916; discharged, 22 February 1916; total period of treatment for venereal disease: 25 days.

Found guilty, 24 May 1916, of overstaying leave from midnight, 22 May, till 11 pm, 23 May 1916: awarded 5 days' confined to barracks, and forfeited 1 day's pay.

Proceeded to rejoin unit, 30 June 1916; rejoined 23rd Bn, in the field, 1 July 1916.

Wounded in action, 4 August 1916 (gun shot wound, right groin, face); admitted to 36th Field Ambulance, 5 August 1916, and transferred to 3rd Casualty Clearing Station; to 23rd General Hospital, Etaples, 6 August 1916; to England, 20 August 1916, and admitted to Bachthorpe Hospital, Nottingham, 21 August 1916 (wounds: severe); transferred to 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital, Harefield, 6 September 1916; discharged to No 2 Command Depot, Weymouth, 24 September 1916.

Admitted to Verne Hospital, 28 October 1916 (venereal disease); marched in to No 2 Command Depot, 6 January 1917; total period of treatment for venereal disease: 14 days.

Found guilty, 10 February 1917, of being absent without leave Monte Video Camp, from 9 pm to 11 pm, 8 February 1917, and making a false statement: awarded 48 hours' detention.

Marched in to No 3 Command Depot, Hurdcott, 17 March 1917.

Proceeded overseas to France, 22 May 1917; rejoined 23rd Bn, in the field, 12 June 1917.

Appointed Lance Corporal, 26 September 1917.

Reported Missing in Action, 7 October 1917.

Court of Enquiry, 11 January 1918, declared fate to be 'Killed in action, 9 October 1917'.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, MADIGAN Sidney Watkins
Red Cross File No 1660147P

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