Charles King Brothers

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Charles King Brothers c1916. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial.

BROTHERS, Charles King

Service no: 7281 [1]

Place of birth: Orange, 1897

Address: Rangeville, QLD

Occupation: Draper

Next of kin: Ernest Linwood Brothers (father), Rangeville, QLD

Date of enlistment: 2 October 1915

Place of enlistment: Toowoomba, QLD

Age at enlistment: 18

Fate: Embarked HMAT A16 Star of Victoria, Sydney, 31 March 1916. Disembarked Tel-el-Kebir 5 May 1916. Embarked SS Briton, Alexandria, 28 May 1916. Embarked Christchurch, England, for France 16 August 1916. Taken on strength 5th Field Company Engineers, Belgium, 9 September 1916. Admitted to 5th Dressing Station suffering from trench foot 4 February 1917. Discharged to duty 17 February 1917. Rejoined unit 18 February 1917. Wounded in action, France, 21 April 1917. Died of wounds received in action, No. 3 Casualty Clearing Station, France, 22 April 1917.

Date of death: 22 April 1917

Buried: Grevillers British Cemetery, France

Charles King Brothers was born into a family with a long history of public service; his father was a dentist of international renown, his maternal grandfather, Charles McArthur King was a Governor of Norfolk Island and his great great grandfather was Phillip Gidley King, the third Governor of New South Wales.

Charles was born in Orange in 1897, the first of two children born to Ernest Linwood Brothers and his wife Mary Christiana nee King. A sister, Mavis, was born in Sydney in 1899. The family moved to Rangeville in southern Queensland where Ernest practiced dentistry and Charles attended Rangeville State School. As a teenager, Charles served for four years with the Citizens Military Forces, attaining the rank of 2nd Lieutenant.

Following his education Charles worked as a draper. In October 1915 he travelled to Toowoomba, where he enlisted. Sapper Brothers embarked from Sydney with the 6th Field Company Engineers, 5th Reinforcements, aboard HMAT Star of Victoria on 31 March 1916, disembarking in Tel-el-Kebir on 5 May. He served in England and France before being taken on strength with the 5th Field Company Engineers in Belgium on 9 September 1916.

In early February 1917 Charles was hospitalised for 12 days suffering from trench foot. He rejoined his unit on 18 February 1917. On 21 April Charles received several gunshot wounds to the left buttock and right foot. He was admitted to No. 3 Casualty Clearing Station, where he died the following day of his wounds. He was buried in the Grevillers British Cemetery by the Reverend EG Muschamp.

Charles King Brothers is commemorated on panel number 123 on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.

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