George Henry James Bentley
Serial No. 5293
George Henry James Bentley - Information
George was one of eight children of George and Matilda Bentley, born in Marrickville in 1883. After his father moved the family to Campbelltown, George began working as an orchardist before relocating to Merrylands with his younger sister, Matilda Jane. George and his family looked on, as his younger brother, Arthur, enlisted in the forces in January 1916. Just two months later, George signed up in Sydney on the 6th of March. At Bathurst Depot, George was stationed to the 14th Reinforcements, 18th Battalion as a Private on the 17th of April. There was a chance George and Arthur got to spend some time together at Bathurst Depot before Arthur was shipped out in May. George's unit departed Sydney Harbour aboard the HMAT Wiltshire on the 22nd of August 1916.
Arriving at Plymouth on the 13th of October, George was transported overseas to the Western Front the following month. Once in France, he was taken on strength to the 18th Battalion on the 26th of January 1917. After only a few weeks, he was shot in his left knee on the 11th of February. A particularly painful wound, he was transported to Le Havre. Requiring further treatment, he was taken to the 3rd London General Hospital in March. They had to operate on his knee, and in May, George was admitted to the Orthopaedic Military Hospital. However his knee joint remained highly inflamed. An x-ray revealed that there was still a metal fragment in the wound. However, because George could limp around, the doctors thought it was inadvisable to operate again. Though, the stuck fragment would continue to cause permanent damage restricting the movement of his knee joint. A medical review board found George unfit for active service, and he was invalided home to Australia. He embarked England on the HMAT Euripides in September.
Upon his return, George was admitted to the 4th Australian General Hospital in Randwick for additional treatment. He then travelled back to Campbelltown, where he received a pension of £3 per fortnight as his wound impeded his work as an orchardist and labourer. After the war ended, George and his family welcomed back his younger brother, Arthur. Both George and Arthur could share in their war experiences. In 1921 George married Alice Jane Hall. George passed away in Granville in 1948.