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Leonard Roy Matthews

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Leonard Roy Matthews
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Personal Information
Date of Birth unknown
"unknown" contains an extrinsic dash or other characters that are invalid for a date interpretation.
Place of Birth Adelaide, South Australia
Death 3 Sep 1916
Place of Death Mouquet Farm, Poziéres
Age at Enlistment 24 years, 1 month
Description 5' 4½" (1/64m) tall ; 119 lbs
53.977 kg
; fair complexion ; grey eyes ; fair hair
Occupation Book-keeper
Religion Church of England
Address Kelmscott, Western Australia
Next of Kin Sister , Mrs Lionel Owen
Military Information
Reg Number 2716
Date of Enlistment 10 Aug 1915
Rank Lance Corporal
Unit/Formation 28th Battalion 6th Reinforcements, transferred to 51st Battalion / 13th Brigade, 4th Division
Date of Embarkation 2 Nov 1915 ‒ 26 Nov 1915
Ship Embarked On HMAT A38 Ulysses
Fate Wounded and Missing in Action 3 Sep 1916, later determined by Court of Inquiry to be KIA.
Monument Villers-Bretonneux Memorial
Australian War Memorial
Medals 1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal



Pre War

His records do not give us his residential address on enlistment. Electoral Roll entry: 1916, Clive street Katanning, book keeper. Uncle of SCO Matthews and WC Matthews.

War Service

He entered Blackboy Hill camp on 17 Aug 1915 and on 16 Oct 1915 he was allocated to the 6th reinforcement draft for the 28th Battalion. A fortnight later he sailed with them to Port Suez in Egypt.

On arrival he was sent to the 7th Training Battalion where he continued training until he was allocated to the newly formed 51st Battalion in Zeitoun on 3 Mar 1916. Appointed Lance Corporal on 6 Apr 1916, he proceeded with the battalion on the HMT Ivernia from Alexandria to Marseilles between 5 and 12 Jun 1916.

Leonard moved into the front lines at Mouquet Farm with his unit on night of 1/2 Sep 1916, and would have gone into the attack on the farm itself. On numerous occasions during 3 Sep 1916 the enemy carried out heavy bombardments of the attacking troops and of the farm when they reached it in order to drive them back. Leonard's body was never identified so it might be assumed that he was a victim of the artillery action. His records do, however, include mention of a Memorial Cross being erected at R 27 d 3.3 Sheet 57 d SE, so his body may have been buried, but post hostilities was unable to be found.

The verdict of a Court of Inquiry was that he had been Killed In Action. His Red Cross File is unable to shed any light on the circumstances of his death.[1].

  • Villers-Bretonneux Memorial 2015 photo
  • Section of 51st Battaliona tablet at Villers-Bretonneux Photo Linton Reynolds 2015


Notes

Leonard's brother and nephews all have a Kelmscott address. Did he live there prior to moving to Katanning? A letter on file from his sister asserts that with the death of their mother, she took him and his unmarried sisters in after their mother died in Feb 1908. (Leonard was 16 at the time.)


  1. "Australian Red Cross Wounded and Missing Files - Leonard Roy Matthews". Australian War Memorial. 2018. Retrieved 2 May 2018. 

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