Albert Victor Berry
From Our Contribution
|Date of Birth||
"not known" contains an extrinsic dash or other characters that are invalid for a date interpretation.
|Place of Birth||Bunbury, Western Australia|
|Death||25 Apr 1918|
|Place of Death||Villers-Bretonneux, France|
|Age at Enlistment||34 years, 2 months|
5'8½" (1.74m) tall ; 135 lbs|
61.235 kg; dark complexion complexion ; grey eyes ; brown hair
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||Jarrahdale, Western Australia|
|Next of Kin||Wife , Mrs Minna Katherine Berry|
|Date of Enlistment||27 Mar 1916|
|Unit/Formation||51st Battalion 4th Reinforcement / 13th Brigade, 4th Division|
|Date of Embarkation||9 Aug 1916 ‒ 25 Sep 1916|
|Ship Embarked On||HMAT A28 Miltiades|
Wounded in Action 14 Jul 1917 |
Killed in Action 25 Apr 1918 2nd Villers-Bretonneux
Jarrahdale War Memorial |
Jarrahdale Honour Roll
ANZAC Memorial Park (Byford)
Australian War Memorial
British War Medal |
Electoral Roll entries - 1903 - 1906 a mill hand living at Karridale with his family (mother was the boardinghouse keeper.) 1912 - a farm labourer at Donnybrook with Minna; 1916 at Bush Landing, Jarrahdale, a sleeper cutter
Initially earmarked for the 19th reinforcement draft for the 11th Battalion, he was transferred in Australia to the 4th draft for the 51st Battalion.
Arriving in Plymouth, he and the rest of his reinforcement draft are sent to the 13th Training Battalion at Rollestone to complete their preparation for France.
On 4 Dec 1916 he embarked on HMT Princess Victoria in Folkestone for Étaples, France. After a fortnight in the 4th Division's Base Depot he and 54 others joined the 51st Battalion on 23 Dec 1916 at Vignacourt, north east of Amiens.
During the night of 13/14 Jul 1917 the 51st Battalion replaced the 14th in the front lines south of Ypres. At 1am the enemy sent a 30 man patrol against one of the outposts, and although it was beaten off twice, this is likely to be when Albert sustained his injury as it was mortared in advance and his wounds to the head, right foot, and elbow were likely from shrapnel.
Seen on 14 Jul 1917 by the 13th Australian Field Ambulance, he was admitted next day to the 4th General Hospital in Camiers. On 19 Jul 1917 he was placed aboard HS Pieter de Coninck and evacuated to England where he entered the Royal Victoria Hospital in Netley (19 Jul 1917) for treatment before being released to the East Leeds Hospital on 6 Aug 1917. Three weeks later he was transferred to the 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital in Harefield, and the on 3 Sep 1917 to No 2 Command Depot in Weymouth. On 22 Sep 1917 he moved on to the No 3 Command Depot in Hurdcott, and then on 10 Nov 1917 to the Overseas Training Brigade at Longbridge Deverill.
Finally on 28 Nov 1917 he returned to Le Havre, France via Southampton and entered the 4th Division's Base Depot until he could rejoin the 51st Battalion in the field. This occurred on 3 Dec 1917 at Dargnies, inland from Le Tréport.
10 days later Albert is ill enough to again visit the 13th Field Ambulance with an infection and was treated by then until 22 Feb 1918 when he returned to duty, again finding his unit in the front line south of Ypres. In March, along with the majority of the Australian Brigades, the 13th to which they belonged was ordered south to stem the advance of the Germans along the Somme Valley.
On 25 Apr 1918 the 51st Battalion was surrounded on three sides by the Germans, but declined an invitation to surrender. Although the battalion war diary places the unit in Switch Trench for most of the day preparing for a counter attack on the Germans in and around Villers-Bretonneux, Albert's individual record reports place of death was not known so he may have been killed while on outpost lookout or patrol.
Participated in battles at Fleurs, Noriel, Bullicourt, Messines Ridge, and 2nd Villers-Bretonneux.
Albert is buried in the Adelaide British Cemetery, Plot 3, Row D, Grave No 20.
Albert's wife had remarried (Rowcroft) by 22 Mar 1932 when she writes seeking copy of his death certificate.