|Place of birth||Charters Towers, Queensland|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||Tenth Avenue, South Townsville, Queensland|
|Age at embarkation||28|
|Next of kin||Mother, Mrs M Townsend, Tenth Avenue, South Townsville, Queensland|
|Previous military service||Nil|
|Rank on enlistment||Private|
|Unit name||9th Battalion, 18th Reinforcement|
|AWM Embarkation Roll number||23/26/4|
|Embarkation details||Unit embarked from Brisbane, Queensland, on board HMAT A49 Seang Choon on
|Rank from Nominal Roll||Private|
|Unit from Nominal Roll||9th Battalion|
|Fate||Killed in Action
|Place of burial||No known grave|
|Commemoration details||The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 17), 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
War service: Egypt, Western Front
Proceeded from Alexandria to England, 29 July 1916.
Proceeded overseas to France, 14 October 1916. Admitted to 24th General Hospital, Etaples, 5 November 1916 (mumps); transferred to 14th Stationary Hospital, Boulogne, 26 November 1916; to No. 1 Convalescent Depot, 29 November 1916; discharged to Base Depot, 8 December 1916; taken on strength, 9th Bn, 17 January 1917.
Reported missing in action, Belgium, 20 September 1917. ; confirmed as killed in action by Court if Enquiry, 8 April 1918. Statement made by 5160 Pte T. O'DONOHUE, 9th Bn, Hurdcott, 2 January 1918: '[TOWNSEND] was in the same Lewis Gun section as myself. On the morning of 20th September 1917, we were advancing to the attack near Glencourse Wood, Belgium. About 7 a.m. a shell landed and wounded three (3) of us including Townsend and myself. Private Townsend was wounded in the stomach, leg and part of his right finger blown away. About two (2) hours later, I saw him lying on a stretcher outside the Advanced Dressing Station in the sunken road behind Glencorse Wood. He looked very bad but was conscious. As the A.M.C. were taking particulars of other men there, I am surprised that Private Townsend should be missing. I think the A.M.C. of the 10th Battn. were at the Dressing station at the time.' Statement by 5660 J. CASSIDY, 9th Bn, Harefield, 5 April 1918: 'The last I saw of Private Townsend was about 600 yards in front of our objective, he was then dead, and he appeared to be very badly knocked about in the head and body.'Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal