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William Oyston


Serial No:
Serial No. 729

1st Battalion


William Oyston - Information

William was a member of the Oyston family whom immigrated to the NSW Colony from England. They settled on the south coast, where William was born in Bulli in 1892. The Oystons eventually moved to the Campbelltown area, residing in Appin. Here, William gained employment as a railway porter at Campbelltown Train Station. His father, George, then relocated the family to Main St in Dapto. A few weeks after Australia declared war on Germany, William enlisted in the AIF. He joined up at Randwick on the 28th of August 1914, aged 22. During extensive training, William was delegated to the 1st Battalion as a Private. He then embarked Sydney onboard the HMAT Afric on the 18th of October 1914.

William arrived at the Australian Base in Egypt. Here, his unit received further training, before they were shipped out to participate in amphibious attacks on the Dardanelles. William was wounded in action during the landings at Gallipoli on the 25th of April 1915. He received a nasty gun shot wound to his left thigh. He was quickly evacuated from the Peninsula and admitted to No. 1 Australian General Hospital at Heliopolis, Egypt. His wound was particularly horrible as the bullet had penetrated and splintered his femur. William required extensive treatment. His leg remained very weak and he could not stand or walk properly without crutches. Due to this damage, William was sent home from Suez on the Ballarat on the 5th of July 1915.

When William reached Australia, he underwent treatment well into 1916. In March, he was brought before a medical review board. He still could not walk properly without pain and was also diagnosed with neurasthenia (shell shock). As a result, he was given a medical discharge and he returned to his civilian life. However, his wound and negative war experience would have haunted him.