Wilfred Vincent Steers
Serial No. 2417
1st Pioneer Battalion
Wilfred Vincent Steers - Information
Wilfred Vincent Steers was born in Wedderburn in 1897. He was a son of William Steers and his second wife, Elizabeth Blanch. Wilfred grew up in the area and served in the Cadet Force. He then moved to 61 Metropolitan Rd in Enmore, where he worked as a machinist. When he was 19 years old, he volunteered for war service, enlisting in Sydney on the 6th of May 1916. During training, he was made a Private with the Pioneers and was sent overseas from Sydney on the Wiltshire on the 22nd of August 1916.
In mid October, Wilfred stepped off the ship in Plymouth, England. He was then marched out to No. 3 Camp at Parkhouse, before being despatched to the Pioneer Training Battalion at Perham Downs in November. In January 1917, Wilfred was shipped to Etaples in France, and was then taken on strength to the 1st Pioneer Battalion. He worked tirelessly throughout 1917 enduring a bitter winter, constructing dugouts, roads, billets, waterways etc, putting his trade skills to good use. After Wilfred reported back from leave in February 1918, he was admitted to hospital with debility. By March, he was evacuated to England to the 1st Southern General Hospital. Wilfred was diagnosed with severe debility, requiring extensive convalescence at Dartford and Hurdcott. He returned to France in June, but continued to be in and out of hospital with influenza, scabies and synovitis in his right knee. He was evacuated to hospital in Wales before being sent back to Australia due to his poor health on the 9th of November 1918.