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William Charles Fleming

Name on Board WCW Fleming
Name on Service
William Charles  Fleming
Enlistment Age 18
Occupation Blacksmith
Place of Birth Williamstown, Vic
Next of Kin Jean Ann Meatchem
Address 19 Kororoit Creek Rd, North Williamstown, Vic
Marital Status S
Enlistment Date 12/07/1915
Service No. 391
Enlistment Place Melbourne, Vic
Embarkation Place Melbourne
Embarkation Date 10/11/1915
Embarkation Ship HMAT Ascanius
Unit on Embarkation 29th Australian Infantry Battalion
Date of Death 24/11/1916
Unit on Death 29th Australian Infantry Battalion
Rank on Death Private
Cause of Death KIA
Place of Wounding/
Somme, France. Buried in trench where he died (No known grave)
Cemetery or Memorial Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, Picardie, France
Additional Information When William Fleming enlisted, at the age of 18, he was assigned to the 29th Battalion which was raised as part of the 8th Brigade at Broadmeadows Camp in Victoria on 10 August 1915. Having enlisted as part of the recruitment drive that followed the landing at Gallipoli, and having seen the casualty lists, these were men who had offered themselves in full knowledge of their potential fate. After arriving in France in June 1916, the 29th Battalion fought its first major battle at Fromelles on 19 July 1916.  The battle was meant to be a diversion to draw attention away from the allies’ Somme offensive, but in just over 24 hours the Australians suffered 5,500 casualties.  Almost 2,000 of them were killed in action or died of wounds and some 400 were captured. This is believed to be the greatest loss by a single division in 24 hours during the entire First World War
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