The AIF Project

Ralph JOHNSON

Regimental number715
Place of birthHealesville, Victoria
SchoolCamberwell Grammar School, Victoria
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationClerk
AddressMyrtle Street, Middle Brighton, Victoria
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation18
Height5' 6.75"
Weight142 lbs
Next of kinFather, Herbert Johnson, Myrtle Street, Middle Brighton, Victoria
Previous military serviceServed as a Senior Cadet (Sergeant), 46th Bn, 4 years.
Enlistment date14 July 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll6 July 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name31st Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/48/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A62 Wandilla on 9 November 1915
31st Battalion Headquarters and Companies A, B, C and D sailed on two ships, HMAT A62 Wandilla, 9th November 1915 from Melbourne, and HMAT A41 Bakara, 5 November 1915, from Melbourne. It is not possible to tell from the Embarkation Roll on which ship an individual embarked.
Rank from Nominal RollLance Corporal
Unit from Nominal Roll31st Battalion
FateKilled in Action 21 July 1916
Place of death or woundingBeaucamp, Fromelles, France
Age at death19
Age at death from cemetery records19
Place of burialPheasant Wood Military Cemetery, Fromelles, France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
118
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Originally listed as buried in Pont-de-Hem Military Cemetery (Beaucamps Communal Cemetery, German Extension Memorial 23), La Corque, France. Parents: Hubert and Alice Maude Mary JOHNSON, Sandown Street, Middle Brighton, Victoria
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked Melbourne, 9 November 1915; disembarked Suez, 7 December 1915.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 17 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 25 June 1916.

Killed in action, 21 July 1916.

Identity disc received from Germany, 24 February 1917.

Note on B.103, buried at Fleurbaix, Sh.36 N.W.

Translation of German report, 29 October 1919, 'Iden: Disc [h]anded over by Intell: Officer with 6th Army H.Q. 12/10/16[.] Australian Pte. R. Johnson, 715, 31st Bn. fell in the neighbourhood of Fromelles 19/7/16.'

Australian Red Cross, Wounded and Missing Bureau information, 15 October 1920, 'Johnson, R. 715 C.31. A.L.C.E. Fell 19.7.16 near Fromelles[.] FINAL GERMAN DEATH LIST ?M-'

On 1 August 1924 the Secretary of Australian Graves Services wrote in a letter, 'I enclose herewith Location Sheet No. AA/LS/5/12346 showing that a Special Memorial is to be erected in PONT DU HEM MILITARY CEMETERY to the memory of L/Cpl. R. Johnson, bearing the inscription:- "To the memory of this Australian Soldier who died as a Prisoner of War in 1916 and is believed to have been buried at the time in Beauchamps Communal Cemetery German Extension, but whose grave is now lost. THEIR GLORY SHALL NOT BE BLOTTED OUT."'

Note, Red Cross File No 1450214: 'The above name appeared on German death list dated 4-11-16.'

Note on file: 'Buried Fleurbaix Sh. 36 N.W. Cert. by A.I.F. Hdqrs List for Lt Spedding.'

Note on file: 'Disc received from Germany and forwarded to next of kin 20.6.17. Cert. by Kit Stores. 1.9.19.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Miscellaneous detailsFather's address subsequently 'Glan-y-Mor', Sandown Street, Middle Brighton, Victoria
SourcesNAA: B2455, JOHNSON Ralph
Red Cross file 1450214

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