|Place of birth
|Saddleworth, South Australia
|Age at embarkation
|Next of kin
|Wife, Mrs Florence Malvinia May Backshall, 5 Rupert Street, Subiaco, Western Australia
|Place of enlistment
|Perth, Western Australia
|48th Battalion, 7th Reinforcement
|Unit embarked from Fremantle, Western Australia, on board HMAT A8 Argyllshire on
|Rank from Nominal Roll
|Unit from Nominal Roll
|Other details from Roll of Honour Circular
|Enlisted 1 September 1916, and posted to 7th Reinforcements, 48th Bn. Taken on strength, 48th Bn, in the field, 19 April 1917. Appointed Lance Corporal, 4 September 1917.
|Killed in Action
|Place of death or wounding
|Place of burial
|No known grave
|The 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.
|Miscellaneous information from
|Widow (remarried): Mrs F.M.M. DEAVES
War service: Western FrontMedals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
|No embarkation Roll for 48th Bn, 7th Reinforcements.
|NAA: B2455, BACKSHALL Walter James