Thomas William EVANS

Thomas William EVANS

Per his military service record (regimental no. 4770), Thomas William Evans was born at Castlemaine, Victoria.[1]  He gave his age as 38 years, his marital status as single, and his occupation as Labourer.  His description on his Certificate of Medical Examination was height 5 feet 6inches tall, weight 149 lbs., with a fair complexion, blue eyes, and light brown hair.  His religious denomination was Church of England.  He completed his medical examination at Dubbo on 12th October 1915, and was attested at Dubbo on 14th October 1915 (the day the Coo-ees left Dubbo for Wongarbon).  He claimed to have had no previous military service.

His brother, Mr. J. Evans, later reported in the Mount Alexander Mail that he had ‘been engaged in farming’ in New South Wales for about three years before he enlisted, and that ‘he was one of those who made up the famous Gilgandra snowball’.[2]  A letter in his service record from a Mrs. S. H. Dunford, from a property near Parkes, enquiring as to his whereabouts after the war, stated that he had ‘enlisted with the Gilgandra Coo-ees’.[3]

After completing the Coo-ee March he went to Liverpool Camp as reinforcement for the 13th Battalion.

On his embarkation roll his address at time of enrolment was Parker Street, Castlemaine, Victoria, and his next of kin is listed as his mother, Mrs I. [Isabella] Evans, at the same address.

On 8th March 1916 Private Evans, along with many of the other Coo-ees, departed Sydney on the HMAT A15 Star of England, as 15th reinforcements for the 13th Battalion.  He arrived in Egypt on 11th April 1916.

He was transferred to the 45th Battalion on 19th April 1916.

On 2nd June 1916 Private Evans left Alexandria aboard the transport Kinfauns Castle, bound for France.  He arrived at Marseilles on 8th June 1916.

Private Evans served with the 45th Battalion through its first action at Fleurbaix, France in July 1916, then as it moved to Pozieres in early August 1916.

On 14th August 1916 the 45th Battalion was in the front line trenches between Pozieres and Martinpuich in France.  During this day 45th Battalion had casualties of 15 men wounded from artillery shelling.  Private Evans was one of the wounded.  He was evacuated to the 4th Field ambulance, then 44th Casualty Clearing Station, with a shrapnel wound to his back.  He was put on the Ambulance Train, and admitted to the 5th General Hospital at Rouen on 16th August 1916.

On 23rd August 1916 he was discharged, and sent to the 4th Australian Division Base Depot at Etaples, France.

He rejoined the 45th Battalion on 16th of September 1916 when it was conducting training at Victoria Camp near Rhenninghelst, Belgium.

On 19th November 1916 the 45th Battalion was moving into the front line at Grease Trench, just north of Gueducourt, France, when Private Evans was evacuated to the 38th Casualty Clearing Station sick with Influenza.

On 21st November 1916 he was placed aboard the 20th Ambulance Train, and conveyed to the 12th General Hospital at Rouen, France, where he was admitted on 22nd November 1916.

Private Evans was discharged from hospital on 2nd December 1916 and sent to the 4th Australian Division Base Depot at Etaples, France

Private Evans rejoined the 45th Battalion on 5th January 1917 when it was at Dernacourt, France, preparing to move to the front line.

On 20th February 1917 the 45th Battalion was in action near Guedecourt, France, when Private Evans was wounded in action for a second time, receiving a serious shrapnel wound to his right forehead that fractured his skull.  He was evacuated to a Casualty Clearing Station, then on 25st February 1917 placed aboard the 21st Ambulance Train.  He was conveyed to the 11th Stationary Hospital at Rouen, France , where he was admitted on 26th February 1917, suffering from gunshot wound head penetrating cranium, severe.

On 19th April 1917 Private Evans was evacuated to England by Hospital Ship.  He was admitted to the 3rd London General Hospital at Wandsworth.

On 21st July 1917 Private Evans was evacuated to the 1st Australian Auxiliary Hospital at Harefield, England.

On 25th July 1917 Private Evans was discharged from hospital, and granted leave to report to the Number 2 Command Depot at Weymouth, England.

Private Evans left England on 27th August 1917 for return to Australia aboard the H.M.A.T. Pakeha, arriving in Australia on 25th October 1917.

He was discharged medically unfit on 22nd November 1917, with gunshot wound to the head, fracture of skull.

 

[1]  NAA: B2455, EVANS T W

[2] ‘Items of News’, Mount Alexander Mail, 14 September 1916, p. 2. Retrieved February 7, 2017, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article119637481

[3] NAA: B2455, EVANS T W, letter to Base Records, Melbourne, from Mrs S. H. Dunford, “Clear View”, Wongalia P.O., via Gunningbland, Parkes, 29th July 1920.

2 responses to “Thomas William EVANS

  1. Well done again Helen…One lucky soldier!

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