The AIF Project


Regimental number582
Place of birthCastlemaine, Victoria
SchoolSydney High School, New South Wales
ReligionChurch of England
AddressWyalong, New South Wales
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation22
Height5' 11"
Weight140 lbs
Next of kinWife, Mrs Florence Louise Watterson, 'Boundary Villa', Temora, New South Wales
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date17 July 1915
Place of enlistmentLiverpool, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentCorporal
Unit name30th Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/47/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A72 Beltana on 9 November 1915
Rank from Nominal RollSergeant
Unit from Nominal Roll30th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 20 July 1916
Place of death or woundingFleurbaix, France (Battle of Fromelles)
Age at death23
Place of burialRation Farm Military Cemetery (Plot VI, Row K, Grave 35), La Chapelle d'Armentieres, France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: Stephen and Martha WATTERSON
Family/military connectionsBrother: 24 Corporal Jack WATTERSON, 3rd Bn, killed in action, 7 May 1917; Brother-in-law: 538 Driver Bernard CARTWRIGHT, 1st Field Artillery Brigade, died of disease, 2 September 1915.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked Sydney, 9 November 1915; Suez, 11 December 1915.

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

Posted missing in action, 20 July 1916.

Court of Enquiry, held in the field, 23 July 1917, pronounced fate as 'Killed in Action, 20 July 1916'.

Statement, Red Cross File No 2880209, 1308 Pte W. GRAHAM, C Company, 30th Bn, 13 October 1916: 'He belonged to X. Pl. C. Co. and was killed at Fleurbaix, on 19th. July, in the charge ... A party was out 2 nights later looking for wounded and dead. Watterson's body could not be found.'

Second statement, 730 Pte J. O'CONNOR, 30th Bn (patient, 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital, Harefield, England), 21 August 1916: 'Watterson was in the charge at Fleurbaix [and] was hit by Machine Gun fire[;] he fell and never moved, and was quite near me at the time.'

Third statement, 148 Corporal W.A. DOWD, 30 November 1916: 'I last saw him on July 19th. about 7 p.m. at Fleurbaix in Nomansland (sic). I saw him throw up his arms and press his hand over his heart, and fall. Apparently he was killed by rifle bullet.'

Fourth statement, 669 Pte S.R. GRANT, 30th Bn (patient, 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital, Dartford, England), 5 December 1916: 'Witness states that he saw the above man killed on July 20th. at Fleurbaix between the 1st and 2nd line of German trenches. He was hit just in front of witness, and the body was left where it fell, as they had to retire shortly afterwards.'

Fifth statement, 1997 Pte C.H. CARVER, 30th Bn (patient, No 2 General Hospital [Casino]), undated: 'He ... was killed by a shell at Flemelle (sic) out in No Man's Land. I was present whe he was hit ... '

Sixth statement, 2431 Pte W. TRICKETT, C Company, 30th Bn (patient, Graylingwell Hospital, Chichester, England), 5 December 1916: 'Informant states that on July 19th 1916 at Fromelles Sgt. Watterson was killed by M.G. fire just in front of Informant between ours and the German lines.'

Seventh statement, 1324 Pte J. HICKEY, 30th Bn (patient, No 4 Australian General Hospital, Randwick), 24 April 1917: 'On 19th July at Fleurbaix Informant was near Watterson in a charge, and saw him fall near our own parapet; he appeared to have been killed instantly.'

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, WATTERSON Randal
Red Cross file 2880209

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