The AIF Project

Albert William PARKER

Regimental number338
Place of birthTarlton, Tasmania
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationLabourer
AddressBell Store, Latrobe, Tasmania
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation23
Height5' 8.25"
Weight130 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs L Parker, Latrobe, Tasmania
Previous military serviceServed for 4.5 years in the Tasmanian Rangers.
Enlistment date21 August 1914
Place of enlistmentBrighton, Tasmania
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name12th Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/29/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Hobart, Tasmania, on board HMAT A2 Geelong on 20 October 1914
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll52nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 4 September 1916
Age at death from cemetery records25
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
156
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Lawrence and Susan PARKER, Latrobe, Tasmania
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked Alexandria to join the Mediterrean Expeditionary Force (Gallipoli Campaign), 2 March 1915.

Appointed Lance Corporal, Mudros, 1 December 1915.

Disembarked Alexandria, 6 January 1916 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Transferred to 52nd Bn, Railhead, 1 March 1916, and taken on strength, Tel el Kebir.

Promoted Corporal, 13 March 1916.

Promoted Sergeant, 20 May 1916.

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

Reported missing in action, 4 September 1916.

Court of Enquiry, 24 April 1917, concluded fate as 'Killed in Action, 4 September 1917'.

Handwritten notation on Form B103: 'Buried'. Grave subsequently lost.

Red Cross File No 2090114H, Notation: 'No trace Germany. Cert. by Capt. Mills 10.10.19.'

Statement, 4923 Pte F.R. Hodgman, 52nd Bn, 5 July 1917: 'Casualty was raised to the rank of Sgt. He was killed just as he went over the parapet on the 3rd September at Mouquet Farm by shell. His body was not buried. I actually saw this.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, PARKER Albert William
Red Cross File No 2090114H

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