|Place of birth||Wagga Wagg, New South Wales|
|School||Public School, New South Wales|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||c/o PO, Whitton, New South Wales|
|Age at embarkation||18|
|Next of kin||Mother, Mrs M J Laird, Benerenback Siding, Hay Line, New South Wales|
|Previous military service||Nil|
|Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll|
|Rank on enlistment||Private|
|Unit name||1st Battalion, 14th Reinforcement|
|AWM Embarkation Roll number||23/18/4|
|Embarkation details||Unit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board RMS Osterley on
|Rank from Nominal Roll||Corporal|
|Unit from Nominal Roll||45th Battalion|
|Fate||Killed in Action
|Place of death or wounding||Messines, Belgium|
|Age at death||20|
|Age at death from cemetery records||20|
|Place of burial||No known grave|
|Commemoration details||The Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 27), 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|
|Parents: Mary Jane LAIRD (formerly Ballard), Yalgogrin North, New South Wales, and the late Edward George James BALLARD. Native of Wagga Wagga, New South Wales|
Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
|Miscellaneous details||Mother's surname incorrectly recorded on Embarkation Roll as LAND.|