The AIF Project

John Foster FLACK

Regimental number6543
Place of birthMajor's Creek, nr Braidwood, New South Wales
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationLabourer
AddressMajor's Creek, Braidwood, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation22
Height5' 7"
Weight133 lbs
Next of kinFather, Walter Flack, Major's Creek, Braidwood, New South Wales
Previous military serviceNil (previously rejected for enlistment on account of eyes)
Enlistment date16 December 1916
Place of enlistmentGoulburn, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name18th Battalion, 19th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/35/4
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A18 Wiltshire on 7 February 1917
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll18th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 5 October 1917
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 23), 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
85
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Commemorated in St Stephen's Anglican Church, Major's Creek, New South Wales. Roll of Intercession in the church reads: 'The Prayers of Parishioners are asked for the following Soldiers who are serving their God, King, and Country in the World War against Germany's Aggression, Tyranny, and Frightfulness.'
Other details

War service: Western Front

Embarked Sydney, 7 February 1917; disembarked Devonport, England, 11 April 1917, and marched into 5th Training Bn, Rollestone.

Admitted to Fargo Military Hospital, 17 May 1917 (pyrexia, unknown origin); discharged to duty, 25 May 1917 (bronchitis).

Proceeded overseas to France, 10 September 1917; marched into 2nd Australian Division Base Depot, Havre, 11 September 1917.

Joined 18th Bn, in the field, Belgium, 29 September 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 5 October 1917.

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal

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