The AIF Project

George Albert THOMAS

Regimental number1015
Place of birthWalgett, New South Wales
SchoolPublic School, Boggabri, New South Wales
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationFarmhand
AddressSevenoaks, Baan Baa, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation19
Height5' 8.5"
Weight142 lbs
Next of kinFather, William Thomas, Sevenoaks, Baan Baa, New South Wales
Enlistment date26 February 1915
Place of enlistmentLiverpool, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name17th Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/34/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A32 Themistocles on 12 May 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll17th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 20 September 1917
Miscellaneous details (Nominal Roll)Name does not appear on Nominal Roll.
Place of death or woundingPasschendaele, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death21
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial , 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
84
Family/military connectionsBrothers: 2870 Pte Edward Gerald THOMAS, 4th Bn, killed in action, 16 April 1918; 4315 Pte Frederick Henry THOMAS, 2nd Bn, returned to Australia, 2 March 1919; 1765 Pte Walter John THOMAS, 3rd Bn, died of wounds, 23 July 1916.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, THOMAS George Albert

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