Stanley Gordon Curtis

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Stanley Gordon Curtis
Curtis Stanley Gordon wedding.jpg
Wedding of Stan Curtis and Jean Watts. Courtesy Jan Kramer
Curtis Stanley Gordon.jpg
Personal Information
Date of Birth 18 May 1918
Place of Birth Jarrahdale, Western Australia
Death 2 Feb 1942
Place of Death Kokopu, East New Britain, PNG
Age at Enlistment 22 years, 4 months
Occupation Truck driver
Religion Congregational
Address 34 Victoria avenue, Claremont
Next of Kin Father , Mr Horace Curtis
Military Information
Reg Number WX10626
Date of Enlistment 14 Jan 1941
Rank Private
Unit/Formation 1st Independent Company
Post War Details
Fate Died off Wounds received 2 Feb 1942
Monument(s) Armadale War Memorial WW2 Plaque
Australian War Memorial Australian War Memorial
Medals 1939-45 Star
Pacific Star
War Medal 1939-45
Australian Service Medal 1939-45

Pre War

In 1925 he was living with his family in Bedfordale.

War Service

Stan enlisted at the Western Command Details Depot at Claremont on 14 Jan 1941 and, designated a General Reinforcement, he was sent on 22 Jan 1941 to the Naval Base Training Depot. On 28 Mar 1941 Stan was transferred to the No 2 Training Battalion at Northam. From 24 April until midnight 1 May 1941 Stan enjoyed pre-embarkation leave. On 4 May 1941 Stanley was transferred to the 7th Infantry Training Centre in South Australia, arriving there on 10 May 1941. There he was transferred to the 1st Independent Company on 24 May 1941. Granted pre-embarkation leave again from 20 Jun until 30 Jun 1041, he was embarked aboard HMT Z in Melbourne on 12 Jul 1941 for New Guinea where he disembarked on 24 Jul 1941. While on leave in 1941 he married Arvonia (Jean) Watts see Arvonia (Jean) Curtis (1919 - 2002).

From the history of the 1st Independent Company, it appears that Stanley was killed when on 2 Feb 1942 the schooner that they were attempting to escape on from larger Japanese forces was sighted by a Japanese plane which subsequently attacked, causing considerable damage to the vessel as well as destroying one of its lifeboats and causing a number of casualties. (Stanley was to die from wounds received). For those that survived the strafing, SS Induna Star had begun taking on water and as a result the men were forced to surrender. Under escort by a Japanese aircraft and then later a destroyer, they were instructed to sail to Rabaul where they became prisoners of war.

  • Rabaul Memorial - Stanley is commemorated on Panel 12


Four of Stan's siblings also served during WW II. Harry Alfred Curtis served with the 2/32nd Battalion; Clarence Albert Curtis served with the RAAF; Kenneth Roy Curtis with the RAN, and sister Mona Curtis with the RAAF. His uncle Albert Cecil Clarence Curtis served with the 10th Garrison Battalion, and cousin Joyce Curtis with the Australian Women's Army Service.

Jean later married Thomas William Law and they had a son and five daughters.

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