William Andrew Caldwell

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CALDWELL, William Andrew

Service no: 15342 [1]

Place of birth: Hunter’s Hill, 26 July 1899

Address: Millthorpe

Occupation: Telegraphist

Next of kin: Katherine Caldwell (mother), Nareen, Blake Street, Millthorpe

Date of enlistment: 30 December 1915

Place of enlistment: Lithgow

Age at enlistment: 18

Fate: Embarked HMAT Ceramic A40 Sydney 7 October 1916. Disembarked Plymouth 21 November 1916. Marched into No 3 Camp Parkhouse 22 November 1916. Embarked Southampton for France 29 May 1917. Hospitalised France 12 June 1917. Rejoined unit 21 June 1917. Wounded in action France 4 October 1917. Rejoined unit 26 December 1917. Proceeded to AIF administration headquarters, London, for tour of duty 30 December 1917. Rejoined unit, France, 8 January 1918. Embarked for returned to Australia 25 September 1919. Returned to Australia 17 November 1919. Discharged 16 January 1920.

Date of death: 9 August 1974, Genista Nursing Home, Burwood

Buried: Catholic Monumental Cemetery, Rookwood

William Andrew Caldwell was a telegraphist at Millthorpe Post Office who served for more than 3½ years with the 7th Field Company Engineers in WWI. William and his brother, Robert Henry Caldwell, had enlisted within a few days of each other and trained together at Bathurst camp. William embarked from Sydney on 7 October 1916, just one month after his brother.

William disembarked in Plymouth on 21 November and proceeded to Parkhouse Camp where he undertook further training. In late May 1917 he embarked for service on the Western Front in France.

In early October William was wounded in action, suffering injuries to the arm and thigh. He was hospitalised and did not rejoin his unit until 26 December. Four days later he was recalled to England to be with his brother Robert, who was dangerously ill with peritonitis. The brothers were together until 1 January 1918, when Robert died. William oversaw his funeral and burial before returning to France on 8 January.

William continued to serve overseas for the duration of the war. He returned to Australia in November 1919 and was discharged from the AIF on 16 January 1920.

In 1928 William married Francis Elizabeth Clarke at Surry Hills in Sydney. He passed away at Genista Nursing Home in Burwood in 1974.

William Andrew Caldwell is commemorated on Orange Public School Honour Roll and St Joseph’s Church Orange Honour Roll.

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