Ernest John Coles

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Ernest John Coles
Coles Ernest John.jpg
State Library of Western Australia
Personal Information
Date of Birth 3 Jan 1894
Place of Birth York, Western Australia
Death 7 Jun 1917
Place of Death Messines, Belgium
Age at Enlistment 22 years, 1 month
Description 5'7½" (1.71m) tall ; 146 lbs
66.224 kg
; dark complexion ; brown eyes ; dark brown hair
Occupation Farm hand
Religion Presbyterian
Address Mundijong, Western Australia
Next of Kin Father , Mr Jesse Coles
Military Information
Reg Number 1805A
Date of Enlistment 24 Jun 1916
Rank Private
Unit/Formation 44th Battalion, 2nd Reinforcement, transferred to the 33rd Battalion / 9th Brigade, 3rd Division
Date of Embarkation 9 Aug 1916 ‒ 25 Sep 1916
Ship Embarked On HMAT A28 Miltiades
Fate Killed in Action 7 Jun 1917 Messines, Belgium
Monument Mundijong School Roll of Honour
Mundijong Honour Roll
Menin Gate Memorial
Australian War Memorial
Medals British War Medal
Victory Medal

Pre War

Enlisted in Mundijong.

War Service

Soon after joining Blackboy Hill camp, Ernest was allocated to the 2nd reinforcement draft for the 44th Battalion, and following some training he travelled with the draft to England. During the voyage Ernest spent 12 days in the ship's hospital with Measles.

On arrival in England, Ernest was taken on strength of the 11th Training Battalion at Lark Hill. On 11 Nov 1916 he was allocated to the 44th Battalion then in England, but three days later he was taken on strength by 'A' Company of the 33rd Battalion.

Ernest proceeded overseas to France with the 33rd Battalion through Southampton on 21 Nov 1916 aboard HMPS Mona's Queen. There are no further entries in his records until his death on 7 Jun 1917 when his unit was part of the attacking force on Messines.

Post War

Ernest's father received a pension at 20/- per fortnight from 9 Feb 1917 until his death a few years after the war concluded.

At time of his death his parents had moved to 71 Amherst road, West Midland. In Memorium card gives father, as having moved back to Mundijong where he was living with his daughter Mrs JE Osborn.

  • 33rd Battalion panel on Menin Gate Memorial - Linton Reynolds photo 2015
  • Commonwealth War Graves Commission


While his records include an initial place of burial (Sh28 S.W. U.3 d.2.4 (AT 19796), his grave was not found later and thus he is recorded on the Menin Gate memorial in Iper (Ypres).

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