The AIF Project

Lawrence SEMPLE

Regimental number2209
Place of birthPerth, Scotland
ReligionPresbyterian
OccupationLabourer
AddressBundaberg, Queensland
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation20
Height5' 4.5"
Weight122 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs J Semple, 19 Stormont Street, Perth, Scotland
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date8 April 1915
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name9th Battalion, 6th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/26/2
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Brisbane, Queensland, on board HMAT A63 Karoola on 12 June 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll9th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 20 September 1917
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
57
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Taken on strength, 9th Bn, Gallipoli, 4 August 1915. Admitted to 2nd Field Ambulance, 6 September 1915, and transferred to 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station. Transferred to 1st Australian General Hospital, Cairo, 11 September 1915 (diarrhoea); transferred to 4th Auxiliary Hospital, 27 September 1915 (dysentery); discharged to Base Details, Abbassia, 7 October 1915. Rejoined unit at Gallipoli, 17 November 1915. Disembarked Alexandria, 4 January 1916 (general Gallipoli evacuation). Found guilty, 6 January 1916, of being absent from parade, Tel el Kebir: awarded 7 days' confined to barracks. Rejoined 9th Bn from hospital, 6 March 1916.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 27 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles, 3 April 1916.

Wounded in action, 2 July 1916 (gun shot wound, left thigh, buttock); admitted to 3rd Canadian General Hospital, 4 July 1916. Transferred to England, 3 July 1916, and admitted to 3rd Northern General Hospital, Sheffield, 4 July 1916. transferred to 3rd Auxiliary Hospital, 26 July 1916; discharged to furlough, 28 September 1916. Marched in to No. 1 Command Depot, Perham Downs. Found guilty, 18 October 1916, of being absent without leave, 3 pm, 10 October-noon, 17 October 1916: awarded 7 days' confined to camp and foreited 5 days' pay. Found guilty, 8 November 1916, of being absent without leave, 7 am, 27 October 1916-7.30 pm, 1 November 1916: admonished and forfeited 6 days' pay. Found guilty, 20 November 1916, of being absent without leave, 8 am, 15 November-10.15 am, 19 November 1916: awarded 168 hours' detention and forfeited 12 days' pay. Proceeded overseas to France, 17 December 1916; rejoined 9th Bn, 7 January 1917.

Found guilty, 7 January 1917, of failing to appear at the place of rendez-vous appointed by his CO: awarded 24 hours' Field Punishment No. 2. Found guilty, 25 January 1917, of being absent from parade ordered by his CO, 22 January 1917: awarded 14 days' Field Punishment No. 2. Found guilty, 16 February 1917, of failing to appear at the place of parade appointed by his CO, 15 February 1917: awarded 21 days' Field Punishment No. 2.

Admitted to 3rd Australian Fielkd Ambulance, 20 June 1917 (trench fever); discharged to duty, 30 June 1917; rejoined Bn, 1 July 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 20 September 1917.

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

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