The AIF Project

Reginald James PICKETT

Regimental number574
Place of birthDandenong, Victoria
ReligionMethodist
OccupationBricklayer
AddressMaude Street, Dandenong, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Next of kinJames Pickett, Maude Street, Dandenong, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed in the 13th Australian Light Horse for 13 years (still serving at time of AIF enlistment).
Enlistment date23 March 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll24 March 1915
Rank on enlistmentCorporal
Unit name24th Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/41/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A14 Euripides on 10 May 1915
Regimental number from Nominal RollCommissioned
Rank from Nominal RollLieutenant
Unit from Nominal Roll24th Battalion
Recommendations (Medals and Awards)

Military Cross


'For conspicuous gallantry in leading bombing parties to clear the enemy out of trenches on the flanks of the portion of the Hindenburg Line captured on 3 May 1917.'
Recommendation date: 12 May 1917

FateKilled in Action 9 October 1917
Age at death from cemetery records24
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
102
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: James and Marie PICKETT, Pickett Street, Dandenong, Victoria
Medals

Military Cross

'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. Though wounded in the forearm he led repeated attacks against the enemy for five hours, doing most valuable work at a critical time.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 189
Date: 8 November 1917

Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

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

Disembarked Alexandria from Mudros, 27 December 1915 (general Gallipoli evacuation); admitted to 15th General Hospital (bomb wound, septic finger); proceeded to rejoin unit, 23 March 1916.

Appointed 2nd Lt, 26 January 1917.

Wounded in action, 3 May 1917 (bomb wound, arm); invalided to England, 12 May 1917, and admitted to 3rd London General Hospital, 13 May 1917; discharged from hospital, 12 June 1917. Promoted Lt, 11 May 1917. Proceeded overseas to France, 25 June 1917; rejoined unit, 3 July 1917. Awarded Military Cross.

Killed in action, 9 October 1917. Sniped through the head and body by an enemy machine gunner in the attack on Daisy Ridge forward of Broodseinde Ridge. He was buried by a party from 24th Bn approximately 500 yards E.N.E. of Broodseinde. Grave destroyed in subsequent fighting.

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

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