The AIF Project

Robert Henry Moodker SALE

Regimental number2508
Place of birthToowoomba, Queensland
SchoolEducated in England
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationPostal assistant
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 5"
Weight119 lbs
Next of kinFather, G A Sale, Levuka, Fiji
Previous military serviceNil ('evaded service')
Enlistment date8 July 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name12th Battalion, 7th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/29/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A61 Kanowna on 24 June 1915
Other details from Roll of Honour CircularAfter being badly wounded on the Somme, he would not have his discharge and wrote to his father - 'I will stick to it as long as one of my Avoca chums is alive'.
Miscellaneous details (Nominal Roll)Name does not appear on Nominal Roll
Place of death or woundingPolygon Wood, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death23
Age at death from cemetery records23
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 17), 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
67
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Rev. George SALE, M.A., and Mrs Mabel SALE, The Vicarage, Levuka, Fiji. Native of Brisbane
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 4 November 1915. Taken on strength, 12th Bn, Mudros, 27 November 1915. Disembarked Alexandria, 6 January 1916 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Admitted to 4th Australian Hospital, Abbassia, 21 January 1916 (mumps); discharged to Base, 9 February 1916; rejoined 12th Bn, Serapeum, 11 March 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 29 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 3 April 1916. Admitted to 3rd Field Ambulance, 13 February 1917 (phileleitis, both thighs); transferred to 22nd General Hospital, Camiers,14 February 1917; discharged to Base Details, 6 March 1917; rejoined unit, 18 March 1917.

Wounded in action, 25 April 1917 (gun shot wound, left thigh); admitted to No. 3 Stationary Hospital, Rouen, 29 April 1917; transferred to No. 2 Convalescent Depot, 30 April 1917; rejoined unit, 19 August 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 20 September 1917.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal

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