Alexander Donald

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Alexander Donald
Personal Information
Date of Birth c1876
Place of Birth Dunedin, New Zealand
Death 4 Jan 1949
Place of Death unknown
Age at Enlistment 39 years, 3 months
Description 5' 5½" (1.66m) tall ; 145 lbs
65.771 kg
; fresh complexion ; blue eyes ; light brown hair
Occupation Brickmaker
Religion Presbyterian
Address Armadale, Western Australia
Next of Kin Brother , Mr Robert Donald
Military Information
Reg Number 4184
Date of Enlistment 13 Sep 1915
Rank Private
Unit/Formation 11th Battalion, 13th Reinforcement, transferred to 51st Battalion D Company / 13th Brigade, 4th Division
Date of Embarkation 17 Jan 1916 ‒ Feb 1916
Ship Embarked On HMAT A30 Borda
Date of Return 10 Sep 1917 ‒ 4 Nov 1917
Ship Returned On HMAT A38 Ulysses
Fate Wounded in Action 14/16 Aug 1916 at Mouquet Farm
Wounded in Action 9 Jun 1917 at Messines
Returned to Australia
Monument Armadale War Memorial (West Armadale panel)
Armadale and Districts Roll of Honour
Medals British War Medal
Victory Medal

Pre War

1903-1907 Electoral Roll entries list brickmaker Alexander living at 'Marrivale Dairy' in Bayswater with father Alex snr. In 1910 they have joined with Robert at Beechboro road West Guildford as dairy farmers. At time of his enlistment Alexander was living with his dairy farmer brother Robert at "Wongong".

War Service

Entering Blackboy Hill camp on 20 Sep 1015 Alex was placed in the 29th Depot Company. On 9 Nov 1915 he was allocated to the 13th reinforcement draft for the 11th Battalion, and travelled with it to Egypt where he continued his training until 17 Mar 1916 when he was taken on strength by the 11th Battalion and posted to D Company..

Alex was transferred to the 51st Battalion as it was being raised at Serapeum on the Suez Canal as part of the expansion and reorganisation of the AIF. He then travelled with them on HMT Ivernia from Alexandria on 5 Jun 1916 for Marseilles, arriving in France on 11 Jun 1916 and disembarking the following day.

Alex was one of 302 casualties suffered by the 51st Battalion between 14 and 16 Jul 1916 at Mouquet Farm, receiving a gun shot wound to his left shoulder. Cleared by the 3rd Australian Casualty Clearing Station on 15 Jul 1916, he was admitted to the 3rd Stationary Hospital in Rouen on 16 Jul 1916, and he was then embarked on HMHS Panama in Le Havre for England on 18 Jul 1916. In England the next day he was admitted to the 1st London General Hospital in Camberwell with GSWs to his left shoulder and hip.

On 24 Oct 1916 he had recovered enough to be released to the No.1 Command Depot in Perham Downs. On 22 Dec 1916 he was fit enough to be transferred to the Infantry Draft Depot at Perham Downs before returning to France aboard HMT Princess Victoria from Folkestone on 31 Dec 1916.

He rejoined the 51st Battalion on 27 Feb 1917 in a rest area in the Somme Valley after some time in the 4th Division's Base Depot at Étaples.

The second time he was wounded it was a gun shot wound to his left hand, received on 9 Jun 1917 during the battle for Messines Ridge in Belgium where, although his battalion had only a minor role in the attack, D Company in which Alex served, was attached to the 52nd Battalion who had a more substantial role. This time Alex was one of the 107 casualties suffered by the 51st Battalion on the day of the battle.

Treated by the 9th Field Ambulance the same day, he was admitted to the 55th General Hospital in Wimereux near Boulogne the next day and on 13 Jun 1917 he was embarked in Boulogne on HMHS St Patrick for England. On arrival in England he was admitted to the Ontario Military Hospital in Kent. Discharged to the 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital on 13 Jul 1917 he was assessed, and then given furlough from 17 - 31 Jul 1917. From there he reported to the No1 Command Depot at Perham Downs on 31 Jul 1917 where he was assessed and passed on to the No 2 Command Depot Weymouth on 10 Aug 1917 for processing for an early repatriation home on account of his debility. Discharged at the 5th Military District on 23 Nov 1917.

Post War

The 1920 Post Office Directory has him as a dairy farmer in Armadale, the 1925 electoral roll as a labourer in Prospect road, Armadale, while in 1935 he is farming at Mokine near Clackline.


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