The AIF Project


Regimental number2077
Place of birthDawson, South Australia
AddressOodla Wirra, South Australia
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 7"
Weight142 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Janet Watkins, Oodla Wirra, South Australia
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date18 October 1915
Place of enlistmentAdelaide, South Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name3rd Light Horse Regiment, 14th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number10/8/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A69 Warilda on 10 February 1916
Rank from Nominal RollDriver
Unit from Nominal Roll1st Field Artillery Brigade
FateKilled in Action 16 October 1917
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 7), 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
Family/military connectionsBrothers: 62185 Pte Ewart Archie WATKINS, 43rd Bn, returned to Australia, 2 January 1919; 6105 Lance Corporal Edgar Bruce WATKINS, 10th Bn, died of wounds, 22 September 1917.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Taken on strength, 1st Light Horse Reserve Regiment, Heliopolis, 8 March 1916.

Transferred to Artillery Details, Tel el Kebir, 15 May 1916.

Embarked Alexandria for England, 28 May 1916.

Proceeded overseas to France, 16 January 1917; taken on strength, 1st Divisional Ammunition Column, and posted to No 1 Section, 12 February 1917.

Transferred to 1st Field Artillery Brigade, and posted to 101st Battery, 14 February 1917.

Admitted to 35th Field Ambulance, 25 April 1917 (diarrhoea), and transferred same day to 1st Field Ambulance; to South Midlands Casualty Clearing Station, 26 April 1917; to 56th Casualty Clearing Station, 26 April 1917; discharged to duty, 6 May 1917; rejoined unit, 7 May 1917.

Appointed Driver, 7 September 1917.

Killed in action, 16 October 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, WATKINS Stanley

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