The AIF Project

William O'DONNELL

Regimental number319
Place of birthPrahran, Victoria
ReligionRoman Catholic
OccupationLabourer
AddressGreville Street, Prahran, Victoria
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation26
Height5' 4"
Weight142 lbs
Next of kinT O'Donnell, Greville Street, Prahran, Victoria
Enlistment date13 July 1915
Place of enlistmentMelbourne, Victoria
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name29th Battalion, A Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/46/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A11 Ascanius on 10 November 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll29th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 19 July 1916
Miscellaneous details (Nominal Roll)Date of fate incorrectly recorded on Nominal Roll as 19 June 1916.
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsV.C.Corner (Panel No 1), Australian Cemetery Memorial, Fromelles, France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
116
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked Melbourne, 10 November 1915; disembarked Suez, 7 December 1915.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 16 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 23 June 1916.

Posted missing, 19/20 July 1916.

'Identification Disc received from Germany. No particulars afforded except the soldier is deceased. To be reported as KILLED IN ACTION, FRANCE 19.7.16.' on the authority of Assistant Adjutant General, ANZAC Section from War Office.

A handwritten note on the bottom of the B.103: 'believed buried in vicinity of Fleurbaix, Sheet 36'.

Red Cross File No 2040302 has statement from 1363 Pte G.L. BAILEY, A Company, 29th Bn, 12 February 1917: 'We went over the top at Fleurbaix on the evening of the 19th July. We took the first and second line of German trenches and held them for 12 hours when we were driven out owing to want of ammunition and lack of water. O'Donnell, [1983] Bregeut and [1390] Haslamwere all reported as missing after the attack. A lot of our men were killed and wounded by machine gun fire behind the German front line. Parties went out for the next two or three nights between our lines and the German front line collecting discs off the bodies but no discs belonging to the above were found.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, O'DONNELL William
Red Cross file 2040302

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