Cecil Clarence Butler
Serial No. 1534
1st light Horse Regiment & 5th Divisional Ammunition Column
Cecil Clarence Butler - Information
When the war began, the Butler family were residing on Elizabeth St in Camden. Cecil was born in Oakdale in 1897. Like many of his siblings, he gained military experience with the 9th Light Horse as part of the NSW Mounted Rifles. He also had gainful employment with an apprenticeship with the Cycle Builders. The First World War had a significant impact on the Butler family. In 1914, Cecil’s older brother Arthur Albert applied for a Commission and left for war. Unfortunately, Cecil’s father passed away on the 4th of November 1914. This left the family business unattended, and consequently Arthur returned home to take the reins. When Cecil turned 18 years old, he decided to enlist at Holsworthy Camp on the 6th of September 1915. During training, Cecil was designated with the 12th Reinforcements, 1st Light Horse Regiment as a Trooper. He was then shipped out for war service on the SS Hawkes Bay, leaving Sydney Harbour on the 23rd of October 1915.
Cecil arrived in Egypt, where he was taken on strength to the 1st Light Horse Reserve Regiment in March 1916. Letters he wrote home from Egypt were published in the local paper. In one, he describes how the troops had settled into their Camp in Heliopolis. However, the Western Front had taken precedence, requiring more manpower. Therefore, the following month, Cecil was transferred to the 5th Division Artillery as a Gunner. On the 21st of April, he was posted to the 5th Divisional Ammunition Column at Ferry Post. In May, Cecil was promoted to Bombardier and stationed to No. 3 Section. On the 20th of June, he left Alexandria for the Western Front in France. Cecil and his unit delivered important war materials for use in operations along the front. He was then promoted to Corporal on the 28th of March 1917, and in June was taken to the 5th Division Gas School. After the war ended, he was appointed Temporary Sergeant in December. He was sent back to Australia from England on the 15th of May 1919, and was discharged in late August. Cecil returned to his family and civie life in Camden.