William Henry Arnold
Serial No. 1129
19th Battalion & 21st Battalion
William Henry Arnold - Information
As the war in Europe developed into an international conflict, William was living at the Cataract Reservoir in Appin with his parents John and Mary. He was born in Sydney c1894, and later served in the Citizen Forces and worked in engineering, as a fitter and turner. When he was 20 years old, William enlisted in Liverpool on the 5th of February 1915. During training, with the 19th Battalion Reinforcements, he was promoted to Sergeant on the 1st of May. He was then shipped out from Melbourne on the HMAT Ceramic on the 25th of June 1915.
William landed in Egypt, and was transported from Alexandria to the Gallipoli Peninsula in mid August. Shortly after he arrived, he was wounded in action on the 31st of August, when a bomb explosion injured his right foot. He was treated at Anzac Cove before being admitted to the 1st Australian General Hospital in Egypt. In late October, he left the 1st Auxiliary Hospital to return to his unit. After the Gallipoli Campaign ended, William's unit was stationed back in Egypt. On the 8th of February in the Canal Zone, he was promoted to Temporary Company Sergeant Major. Infantry operations subsequently shifted to the Western Front, and the 19th Battalion departed Alexandria for France in March. Here, William was promoted to Company Sergeant Major on the 1st of April 1916. His unit then participated in action at Pozières, during the Battle of the Somme. During these operations, William demonstrated his abilities as a fighting soldier. Later, in mid September, he was transferred to the 21st Battalion and was appointed 2nd Lieutenant on the 23rd of September. On the 17th of November 1916, during attacks in the Somme Sector at Flers, William was wounded in action and later that day died of his wounds. He was buried at Warlencourt British Cemetery in France. William was a good soldier and in orders sent in December 1916, was mentioned for gallant conduct. In mid 1916, William's parents had moved to a property called Hillcrest in Leichhardt. Here, they were informed about the tragic loss of their son. They later relocated to Rockdale in 1921.