Regimental number1041
Place of birthTralee, Co Kerry, Ireland
SchoolChristian Brothers Schools, Tralee, Co Kerry, Ireland
Age on arrival in Australia27
ReligionRoman Catholic
OccupationShip's fireman
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation25
Height5' 9"
Weight162 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs Coll, Rock Street, Tralee, Kerry, Ireland
Previous military serviceServed for 5 years in the Royal Munster Fusiliers.; Served for 5 years in Special Reserve of the Royal Munster Fusiliers.
Enlistment date4 September 1914
Place of enlistmentKensington, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name2nd Battalion, E Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/19/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board Transport A23 Suffolk on 18 October 1914
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll2nd Battalion
FateKilled in Action 4 October 1917
Place of death or woundingFrance
Age at death27
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 7), 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
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked from Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 5 April 1915. Wounded in action, 8 May 1915; admitted to 1st Australian General Hospital, Cairo, 13 May 1915; transferred to duty, 28 May 1915; rejoined Bn at Gallipoli, 29 May 1915. Admitted to Field Ambulance, 23 June 1915 (teeth); transferred to Alexandria and admitted to Greek Hospital; transferred to Convalescent Depot, 6 July 1915; to duty, 7 July 1915. Found guilty, Alexandria, 10 July 1915, of being absent without leave, 9-10.30 pm, 9 July 1915, and of drunkenness and assault: fined 5/- and awarded 14 days' confined to barracks. Rejoined Bn at Gallipoli, 25 July 1915.

Wounded in action, 8 August 1915; admitted to St Elmo Hospital, Valetta, Malta, 12 August 1915. Embarked for Egypt, 26 September 1915; admitted to Overseas Base, Alexandria, 30 September 1915. Found guilty of being absent without leave, 8.30 am-2 pm, 6 October 1915: awarded 168 hours' detention. Rejoined Bn, Gallipoli, 31 October 1915. Appointed Lance Corporal, 5 November 1915. Disembarked Alexandria, 28 December 1915 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Found guilty of drunkenness, 28 December 1915: reverted to Private. Found guilty, 8 January 1916, of breaking camp and being absent without leave, 9 am, 8 January 1916, to 10.50 pm until arrested in Cairo: awarded 21 days' detention and forfeiture of 2 days' pay. Transferred to 54th Bn, 14 February 1916; to Divisional Sanitation Squadron, 18 February 1916, and attached to 1st Field Ambulance.

Proceeded from Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 17 March 1916; disembarked Marseilles (date not recorded). Taken on strength, 2nd Bn, 17 May 1916.

Found guilty, 19 July 1916, of disobedience of orders (1) in that he was late on parade; (2) in that he whilst a defaulter did not answer his name when called upon: awarded 7 days' Field Punishment No. 2. Found guilty, 5 August 1916, of (1) being absent from CO's parade at 1400 on 4 August 1916; and (2) conduct to the prejudice of good order and Military discipline in that he on parade on 2 August 1916 threw down his rifle and remarked 'He was fed up with this game' or words to that effect: awarded 7 days' Field Punishment No. 2.

Detached to 1st Australian Light Trench Mortar Battery, 15 August 1916. Found guilty, 28 August 1916, of disobeying an order by an Officer: awarded 7 days' Field Punishment No. 2. Found guilty, 16 September 1916, of being absent without leave, 9 pm, 14 September 1916, to 4.30 pm, 15 September 1916: awarded 14 days' Field Punishment No. 2 and forfeiture of 2 days' pay. Rejoined Bn, 17 October 1916. Found guilty, 24 November 1916, of (1) disobedience of orders in that he was absent without leave from 1600, 6 November 1916, until apprehended by Military Field Police, 0800, 7 November 1916; (2) losing by neglect Government Property viz. rifle and equipment: awarded (1) admonished; (2) make good the loss. To England on leave, 6 December 1916; rejoined Bn, 25 December 1916.

Detached for duty with Anzac Light Railway, 28 December 1916. Found guilty, 17 February 1917, while on active service of being absent without leave, 2030, 13 February 1917, to 1700, 14 February 1917: awarded 6 days' Field Punishment No. 2 and forfeiture of 2 days' pay. Rejoined 2nd Bn, 11 June 1917. Found guilty, 19 July 1917, of (1) drunkenness; (2) violently resisting the Military Police, 16 July 1917: awarded 14 days' Field Punishment No. 2. Found guilty, 21 July 1917, of knowingly and deliberately destroying a document, to wit Pay-book, which it was his duty to preserve: awarded 7 days' Field Punishment No. 2 (to run concurrently with previous sentence). Rejoined 2nd Bn, 25 September 1917. Detached for duty with 1st Field Company Engineers, 28 September 1917.

Killed in action, Belgium, 4 October 1917.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, COLL John