The AIF Project

William Hay WALKER

Regimental number2412
Place of birthNewcastle-On-Tyne, England
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationBuilder
AddressCharlton Street, Cessnock, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation29
Height5' 5.5"
Weight130 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Elizabeth Walker, Newcastle-on-Tyne, England
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date29 May 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll10 May 1916
Place of enlistmentCessnock, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name36th Battalion, 4th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/53/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A30 Borda on 17 October 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll36th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 12 October 1917
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 25), 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
127
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Sydney, 17 October 1916; disembarked Plymouth, England, 9 January 1917; marched into 9th Training Bn, 20 January 1917.

Found guilty, Durrington Camp, 2 February 1917, of being absent without leave from midnight, 29 January, to 12.30 pm, 30 January 1917; awarded 5 days' Field Punishment No 2, and forfeited 8 days' pay.

Proceeded overseas to France, 25 April 1917; taken on strength, 36th Bn, in the field, 1 May 1917.

Wounded in action, 7 June 1917 (gassed), and admitted to 9th Australian Field Ambulance, and thence to 2nd Australian Casualty Clearing Station; to Ambulance Train, and admitted to 2nd Canadian General Hospital, Boulogne, 8 June 1917; transferred to No 3 Convalescent Depot, 21 June 1917; to 3rd Australian Division Base Depot, Rouelles, 29 June 1917; rejoined Bn, in the field, Belgium, 6 July 1917.

Reported missing in action, 12 October 1917.

Now, 27 February 1918, reported 'Killed in action, 12 October 1917.'

Note on Red Cross File: 'No trace Germany. Cert by Captain Mills. 14.10.19.'

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, WALKER William Hay
Red Cross File No 2840102H

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