The AIF Project

Eric Cyril NATION

Regimental number3246A
Place of birthMagill, South Australia
SchoolMagill Public and Norwood High Schools, South Australia
ReligionBaptist
OccupationLabourer
AddressProsser Avenue, Norwood, South Australia
Marital statusSingle
Next of kinMother, Mrs E E Nation, Prosser Avenue, Norwood, South Australia
Previous military serviceServed in the Senior Cadets for 3 years; 1 year in the 79th Infantry, Citizen Military Forces (still serving at time of AIF enlistment).
Enlistment date26 July 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll19 July 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name10th Battalion, 11th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/27/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A24 Benalla on 27 October 1915
Regimental number from Nominal Roll3246
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll50th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 10 June 1917
Place of death or woundingMessines, Belgium
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 29), 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
151
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Samuel and Emily NATION, Morphettville, South Australia. Native of Howe Park, Magill
Family/military connectionsBrothers: 4541 Pte Clifford Storry NATION, 10th Bn, killed in action, 6 May 1917; 149 Pte Ralph NATION, 7th Field Company Engineers, died of wounds, 6 March 1917; also three cousins from SA (Emily Elizabeth Nation, mother).
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Allotted to 50th Bn, Zeitoun, 29 February 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 5 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 12 June 1916.

Admitted to 3rd Canadian General Hospital, Boulogne, 15 September 1916 (influenza); rejoined unit, 5 May 1917.

Killed in action, 10 June 1917. Buried 1 mile N.E. of Messines, Belgium. Grave destroyed in subsequent fighting.

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

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