The AIF Project

Andrew ESLER

Regimental number5476
Place of birthBelfast, Co Antrim, Ireland
Address77 Metropolitan Road, Enmore, New South Wales
Marital statusSingle
Age at embarkation34
Height5' 7"
Weight131 lbs
Next of kinSister, Miss Margaret Esler, 77 Metropolitan Road, Enmore, New South Wales
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date23 March 1916
Date of enlistment from Nominal Roll23 March 1916
Place of enlistmentDubbo, New South Wales
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name18th Battalion, 14th Reinforcement
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/35/3
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on board HMAT A18 Wiltshire on 22 August 1916
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll18th Battalion
FateReturned to Australia 22 February 1917
Discharge date16 October 1917
Other details

War service: England

Embarked Sydney, 22 August 1916; disembarked Plymouth, England, 13 October 1916. Marched into 5th Training Bn, Rollestone, 14 October 1916.

Found guilty, Barrington Camp, 29 October 1916, of being absent without leave from 9 am to 9 pm, 26 October 1916: awarded 3 days' confined to camp, and forfeited 1 day's pay.

Injured in road accident, and admitted to Fargo Military Hospital, 12 November 1916 (shock and severe fracture of spine).

Statement by Esler: 'I went into Shrewton after tea, about 6 p.m. on sunday night the 12th Nov 1916 in company with a friend. we walked about the village and had several drinks of beer and one whisky. I went to each of the four hotels at Shrewton during the evening. At about 9 p.m. my mate and I started to go back to the camp. We had just left the village in the direction of the Camp, walking in the roadway when I was struck from behind by a motor car. I did not hear the car coming, nor see the lights from the lamps, nor hear the horn. I remember nothing more until I awoke in hospital on the morning of the 13th Nov 1916 ... I was not absolutely sober, but not absolutely drunk ... it was very foggy.' Board of Enquiry, Rollestone Camp, 21 November 1916, concluded (1) That at the time of the accident Pte Esler was not on duty. (2) That Pte Esler was solely to blame for the accident.

Commenced return to Australia on board HS 'Karoola', 22 February 1917; disembarked Sydney, 10 April 1917; discharged (medically unfit: paraplegia), 16 October 1917.

Medal: British War Medal
SourcesNAA: B2455, ESLER Andrew

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