The AIF Project


Regimental number1639
Place of birthSummertown, South Australia
ReligionChurch of England
Address114 Townsend Road, Subiaco, Western Australia
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation32
Height5' 7.25"
Weight157 lbs
Next of kinWife, Mrs Evelyn Rose Searle, 168 Bagot's Road, Subiaco, Western Australia
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date19 July 1915
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll15 July 1915
Place of enlistmentPerth, Western Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name32nd Battalion, 1st Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/49/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A2 Geelong on 18 November 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll32nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 20 July 1916
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsV.C. Corner (Panel No 6), Australian Cemetery, Fromelles, France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked Adelaide, 18 November 1915; disembarked Suez, 18 December 1915.

Found guilty, Ismailia, 4 February 1916, of (1) disobedience of orders in that he absented himself without leave from 1300 hours parade, (2) being absent from camp without leave: awarded 7 days' confined to camp and forfeits 1 day's pay.

Taken on strength of D Company, 32nd Bn, Tel el Kebir, 1 March 1916.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 17 June 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 23 June 1916.

Found guilty, 6 July 1916, of (1) drunkenness, (2) being absent without leave from 2100 hours until arrested at 2205 hours, (3) attempting to evade arrest: awarded 28 days' Field Punishment No 2.

Posted missing, 20 July 1916.

Court of Enquiry, held in the field, 12 August 1917, pronounced fate as 'Killed in Action, 20 July 1916'.

Note on Red Cross File No 2450110: 'No trace Germany[.] Cert. by Capt. Mills. 10.10.19.'

Statement, 865 Pte W.J. GOULD, B Company, 32nd Bn (patient, 2nd Southern General Hospital, Southmead, Bristol, England), 7 January 1917: 'I was told by Pte Bullock, D. Coy, 32 A.I.F. that he had seen Pte Searle lying out dead in No Man's Land on the Fleur Bay (sic) front near Armentieres.'

Second statement, 1351 Pte S.M. REDMOND, D Company, 32nd Bn (patient, 1st Birmingham War Hospital, Rubery, England), 18 February 1917: 'Informant states that on the 19th July, 1916, at 8.30 p.m. at Fleurbaix he saw Searle last in No Man's Land at the beginning of an attack. He was hit by shrapnel and killed. Several other men saw the occurrence. The Informant states that he actually saw seven of the missing men in the Battalion killed.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, SEARLE Henry
Red Cross file 2450110

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