The AIF Project

William Joseph O'REGAN

Regimental number3283
Place of birthGlenelg, South Australia
ReligionRoman Catholic
OccupationClerk
Address16 Rose Street, Glenelg, South Australia
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Next of kinFather, D O'Regan, 16 Rose Street, Glenelg, South Australia
Enlistment date28 July 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll21 July 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name12th Battalion, 11th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/29/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A24 Benalla on 27 October 1915
Rank from Nominal RollSergeant
Unit from Nominal Roll52nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 25 September 1917
Age at death from cemetery records23
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
156
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Commemorated in Quorn Cemetery, South Australia. Photo: Peter Dennis. Parents: David and Catherine O'REGAN, Glenelg, South Australia
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

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

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