The AIF Project

Eric Raymond EDWARDS

Regimental number7004
Place of birthDaylesford, Victoria
SchoolDaylesford State School, Daylesford, Victoria
Other trainingDaylesford Technical School, Victoria
OccupationBank clerk
Addressc/o Mrs Armstrong, Davey Avenue, Oakleigh, Victoria
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation21
Height5' 8.5"
Weight156 lbs
Next of kinMother, Mrs M Armstrong, Davey Avenue, Oakleigh, Victoria
Previous military serviceHe was in the Militia and passed for his Commission on outbreak of War.
Enlistment date15 November 1916
Place of enlistmentMelbourne, Victoria
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name14th Battalion, 23rd Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/31/4
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Melbourne, Victoria, on board HMAT A7 Medic on 16 December 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll14th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 15 October 1917
Miscellaneous details (Nominal Roll)Date of death entered on Nominal Roll as 16 October 1917; date variously recorded on NAA file as 15 or 16 October 1917.
Place of death or woundingPasschendaele, Ypres, Belgium
Age at death21
Age at death from cemetery records21
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsThe Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial (Panel 17), 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
Miscellaneous information from
  cemetery records
Son of William Thomas EDWARDS and Mary ARMSTRONG, his wife, 'Medomsley', Davey Avenue, Oakleigh, Victoria. Native of Daylesford, Victoria
Family/military connectionsBrother: 12287 Pte John EDWARDS, 2nd Squadron, Australian Flying Corps, returned to Australia, 6 May 1917.
Other details

War service: Western Front

Statement, Red Cross File, 1790 Pte L.H. WOODBURN, 14th Bn, 22 January 1918: 'I saw him killed instantly by shell on Octr 15th at Ypres. We were just holding the line. He had just come in from patrol duty and was sleeping when he was killed - he hardly shifted his position after being knocked. He was buried just outside the trench - we could not put a cross up. I was sitting alongside him at the time he was knocked.'

Medals: British War Medal, Victory Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, EDWARDS Eric Raymond
Red Cross File 0990902T

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