The AIF Project

Allan Read WHETTEM

Regimental number5223
Place of birthEmsworth, Hampshire, England
SchoolWaroona State School, Western Australia
Age on arrival in Australia9.9
ReligionChurch of England
OccupationTelegraphist
AddressWaroona, Western Australia
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation18
Height5' 9"
Weight139 lbs
Next of kinFather, J R Whettem, Hadley, Waroona, Western Australia
Previous military serviceSrved in the Cadets (Area 86B); still serving at time of AIF enlistment.
Enlistment date5 February 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll26 January 1916
Place of enlistmentPerth, Western Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name16th Battalion, 16th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/33/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board HMAT A9 Shropshire on 31 March 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll16th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 16 April 1918
Place of death or woundingHebuterne, France
Age at death19.9
Age at death from cemetery records19
Place of burialGommecourt British Cemetery No 2 (Plot II, Row F, Grave No 2), Hebuterne, France
Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
81
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Parents: James Read WHETTEM and Margaret P. WHETTEM, Waroona, Western Australia
Family/military connectionsHalf-brother: 3518 Pte Ritchie Mathewson WHETTEM, 1st Bn, killed in action, 7 April 1917.
Other details

War service: Egypt, Western Front

Embarked Fremantle, 31 March 1916; disembarked Egypt, 24 April 1916.

Admitted to 2nd Australian Stationary Hospital, 20 May 1916 (pyrexia, unknown origin); transferred to Ambulance Train No 4, 25 May 1916, and admitted to No 4 Auxiliary Hospital (enteric); transferred to Ras el Tin Convalescent Depot, Alexandria, 3 June 1916; discharged, and taken on strength, 16th Bn, Tel el Kebir, 1 July 1916.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 6 August 1916; disembarked England (date not recorded).

Proceeded overseas to France from 4th Training Bn, 22 September 1916; taken on strength, 16th Bn, in the field, 4 October 1916.

Admitted to 4th Australian Field Ambulance, 6 January 1917 (ulcer, foot), and transferred to Corps Rest Station; to 45th Casualty Clearing Station, 6 January 1917; to Ambulance Train No 16, and admitted to 5th General Hospital, Rouen, 7 January 1917; transferred to 2nd Convalescent Depot, 16 January 1917; discharged to Base Depot, Etaples, 20 January 1917; rejoined Bn, in the field, 17 February 1917.

Admitted to 3rd New Zealand Field Ambulance, 15 June 1917 (rheumatoid arthritis); transferred to 1st Australian Casualty Clearing Station, 16 June 1917; discharged to duty, 29 June 1917; rejoined Bn, in the field, 30 June 1917.

Detached to 4th Division Power Buzzer School, 12 February 1918; rejoined Bn from detachment, 24 February 1918.

Killed in action, 5 April 1918.

Statement, Red Cross File No 2910910, 2555 Pte J.H. NORRIS, 16th Bn, 1 April 1919: 'I saw Whettem's body ... after he was killed by shell fire in the right breast at Hebuterne about 10/11 a.m. he was mending the line at the time. I think he lived for about ½ hour but was unconscious all the time.'

Second statement, Sergeant Major J.T. TANDRY, 10 September 1919: 'I saw him after he was wounded at Hebuterne near Albert, early in April 1918. He died on the way to Dressing Station.'

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
Miscellaneous detailsSurname entered incorrectly on Embarkation Roll as WHETTEN.
SourcesNAA: B2455, WHETTEM Allan Read
Red Cross File No 2910910

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