William Henry Gibbs

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William Henry Gibbs
Personal Information
Date of Birth 9 Mar 1884
Place of Birth Cannington, Western Australia
Death 3 Dec 1967, aged 83
Place of Death Hollywood repat Hospital, Nedlands, Western Australia
Age at Enlistment 32 years, 2 months
Description 5'8" (1.73m) tall ; 130lbs
58.967 kg
; dark complexion ; grey eyes ; dark hair
Occupation Contractor
Religion Church of England
Address Maddington, Western Australia
Next of Kin Father , Mr Stephen Gibbs
Military Information
Reg Number 5718
Date of Enlistment 21 Mar 1916
Rank Private
Unit/Formation 16th Battalion, 18th Reinforcement
Date of Embarkation 18 Jul 1916 ‒ 9 Sep 1916
Ship Embarked On HMAT A48 Seang Bee
Date of Return 4 Jun 1919 ‒ 18 Jul 1919
Ship Returned On SS Bremen
Fate Wounded in action 11 Apr 1917 1st Bullecourt
Wounded in action 10 Jul 1918
Returned to Australia
Monument Gosnells Road Board Honour Roll
Gosnells Ward Honour Roll
Medals British War Medal
Victory Medal

Pre War

William was the third child born to Stephen Searley Gibbs and Eliza White. Electoral Roll entries: 1910 at 138 Summers street, Perth, contractor; 1916 Maddington, farmer.

War Service

William entered camp as a member of the 66th Depot Company until he was allocated to the 28th reinforcement draft for the 16th Battalion on 4 Apr 1916. Bill travelled with the draft to England aboard HMAT A48 Seang Bee and on arrival he was sent to the 4th Training Battalion to prepare for service in France and Belgium. Suffering with mumps he was admitted to the Sutton Veny Military Hospital for treatment from 10 - 29 Nov 1916 before returning to the 4th Training Battalion. On 21 Dec 1916 Bill travelled overseas to France from Folkestone on HMT Princesse Clementine, and after a few days in base depots, he joined the 16th Battalion on 2 Jan 1917.

Wounded in action on 11 Apr 1917 at Bullecourt with a gun shot wound to his left arm, he was treated by the 4th Field Ambulance on 11 April, the 56th Casualty Clearing Station 12 - 14 Apr 1917, and the 10th General Hospital at Wimereux on 15 Apr 1917 before being evacuated to England from Boulogne aboard HMHS St Denis on 16 Apr 1917. In England he was admitted to the High Beach Hospital Westgate-on-Sea, before being released to the 3rd Australian Auxiliary Hospital at Dartford on 14 May 1917 as his condition improved. Bill was granted furlough from 18 May to 2 Jun 1917. Returning late he was charged with being AWOL from 3:30pm 2 Jun until 4:00pm on 5 Jun 1917. He was awarded 7 days confined to camp, and forfeited four day's pay.

On 5 Jul 1917 he was fit to proceed overseas again via Folkestone, and Bill rejoined the 16th Battalion on 27 Jul 1917. He remained with them until he was granted UK leave on 13 Mar 1918. On 28 Mar 1918 while on leave he was admitted to the 1st Australian Dermatological Hospital at Bulford (illness other than VD) and treated by them until 15 Apr 1918. On 12 Jun 1918 he proceed overseas again via Folkestone before rejoining the 16th Battalion on 21 Jun 1918. Bill was wounded in action a second time on 10 Jul 1918 with a shell wound to his back. Treated by the 4th Field Ambulance that day, he was transferred to the 46th Casualty Clearing Station who treated him from 10 - 14 Jul 1918 before placing him on an Ambulance Train for Le Tréport where he was admitted to the 16th General Hospital. On 10 Aug 1918 he was released to the 1st Australian Convalescent Depot at Le Havre, and Bill returned to normal duty on 27 Aug 1918.

On 6 Sep 1918 Bill rejoined his battalion, but only briefly, as on 20 Sep 1918 he again needed medical attention. Seen by the 4th Field Ambulance, then the 53rd Casualty Clearing Station who placed him on Ambulance Train No. 42 for Le Havre where he entered the 2nd General Hospital on 26 Sep 1918. Released to the convalescent depot on 1 Oct 1918, he was transferred to the Base Depot on 15 Oct 1918. On 28 Oct 1918 he rejoined the 16th Battalion in a rear rest area in northern France.

From 13 to 20 Feb 1919 he was on escort duty to Paris, and on 31 Mar 1919 he embarked for the UK from France as a first step in his return to Australia on the SS Bremen. Bill was discharged by the 5th Military District on 30 Aug 1919

Post War

He returned to farming at Wanneroo, where he was a farmer prior to the war for a few years. On 3 August 1929 he married Hilda Lucy Dellar (1900 - 1985).

Electoral Roll entries: 1925 Maddington, farmer; 1931 - 1958 Albany road, contractor


For further information on this soldier, or for more information about the history and heritage of the City of Gosnells, please contact the Heritage Coordinator on 9391 6011

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