The AIF Project

John Charles DUN

Regimental number82
Place of birthGympie Queensland
SchoolMonkland State School, Gympie, Queensland
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationLabourer
AddressBrisbane, Queensland
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Next of kinMother, Mrs Elizabeth Dun, Crescent Road, Gympie, Queensland
Previous military serviceServed in the Cadets in Gympie and Ayr and the Citizen Military Forces at Ayr.
Enlistment date5 January 1916
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name41st Battalion, Machine Gun Section
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/58/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A64 Demosthenes on 18 May 1916
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll41st Battalion
Recommendations (Medals and Awards)

Distinguished Conduct Medal


Recommendation date: 9 April 1918

FateKilled in Action 1 September 1918
Place of death or woundingNear Clery on the Sommer River, France
Age at death24
Age at death from cemetery records24
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian 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
133
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Percy Vivian and Elizabeth Ann DUN, Post Office, Syr, Quensland. Born at Gympie, Queensland
Medals

Distinguished Conduct Medal

'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion during operations, acting as a Lewis gunner. Seeing the critical position of his platoon, he took charge of his section, and moved them to a position which cleared his right flank of the enemy. He then transferred his fire to the opposite flank, which enabled his platoon to get a fresh position and save the post. His fine example and coolness, and the excellent manner in which he controlled his section throughout a critical period, were largely responsible for saving the lives of many of his comrades.'
Source: 'Commonwealth Gazette' No. 15
Date: 4 February 1919

Other details

War service: Western Front

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal

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