The AIF Project

William John WELCH

Regimental number1192
Place of birthThebarton, South Australia
SchoolPublic School, South Australia
Address367 Station Street, North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation20
Height5' 11"
Weight160 lbs
Next of kinFather, William Welch, Lygon Hotel, Lygon Street, Carlton, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed with the Militia.
Enlistment date10 September 1914
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name10th Battalion, 1st Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/27/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT Themistocles on 7 December 1914
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll10th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 7 October 1917
Place of death or woundingYpres, Belgium
Age at death23
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe 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
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Mr W and Mrs M WELCH
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked from Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, 2 March 1915. Wounded in action, 25-29 April 1915 (gun shot wound, right foot and thigh). Embarked from Alexandria for England, 3 May 1915; disembarked Southampton, 12 May 1915, and admitted to Craylingwell War Hospital, Chichester. Three periods of treatment for venereal disease: 23-30 June 1915 (8 days); 25 September-5 October 1915(11 days); 27 November-22 December 1915 (26 days). Married Rose, Nurse, England (date not recorded on file). Disembarked Alexandria ex Devonport, 5 March 1916; rejoined 10th Bn, Serapeum, 10 March 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 27 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 3 April 1916.

Admitted to 2nd Australian Field Ambulance, 10 November 1916; rejoined Bn, 15 November 1916.

Killed in action, Belgium, 7 October 1917.

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

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