|Date of birth|
|Place of birth||Adelaide, South Australia|
|Address||Maylands, South Australia|
|Age at embarkation||36|
|Next of kin||Wife, Mrs J Sparks, 4 Frederick Street, Maylands, South Australia|
|Previous military service||Nil|
|Place of enlistment||Adelaide, South Australia|
|Rank on enlistment||Private|
|Unit name||32nd Battalion, 14th Reinforcement|
|AWM Embarkation Roll number||23/49/3|
|Embarkation details||Unit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A38 Ulysses on
|Rank from Nominal Roll||Private|
|Unit from Nominal Roll||32nd Battalion|
|Fate||Killed in Action
|Place of burial||No known grave|
|Commemoration details||Australian 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
War service: Egypt, Western Front
Embarked Melbourne, 22 December 1917; disembarked Egypt, 16 January 1918.
Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 29 January 1918; disembarked Taranto, Italy, 4 February 1918; entrained Taranto, 7 February 1918; detrained Cherbourg, France, 14 February 1918.
Embarked Cherbourg, 14 February 1918; disembarked Southampton, England, 15 February 1918, and marched in to 15th Training Bn, Codford.
Marched in to 14th Training Bn, 11 April 1918.
Admitted to Group Clearing Hospital, Codford, 27 April 1918; transferred to No 3 New Zealand General Hospital, Codford, 7 May 1918 (catarrh, otitis media); discharged to Training Depot, 7 June 1918.
Proceeded overseas to France, 24 June 1918; taken on strength, 32nd Bn, in the field, 28 June 1918.
Killed in action, 1 August 1918.Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
|Sources||NAA: B2455, SPARKS William Gillies|