Tuesday, 11 November 2014

William Randall

On 29 September 1914 Will Randall, born in Avoca, enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force. He was  a labourer, thirty-two years old, and unmarried. Will Randall gave his next of kin as his father Edward, also of Avoca. (National Archives of Australia: Australian Imperial Force, Base Records Office; B2455, First Australian Imperial Force Personnel Dossiers, 1914-1920; RANDALL William : Service Number - 532 : Place of Birth - Avoca VIC : Place of Enlistment - Avoca VIC : Next of Kin - (Father) RANDALL Edward )

Randall wrote to his father and the Avoca Free Press reproduced his letter on 28 November 1914.

No title. (1914, November 28). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 2. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151624198

Randall was assigned to the 14th Battalion with the regimental number 532. He sailed on 22 December 1914 with the 14th Battalion on HMAT Ulysses A38.

LETTERS FROM OUR SOLDIERS. (1915, March 10). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 3. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151624557

No title. (1915, April 17). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 2. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151622087

On 28 April 1915 Will Randall was wounded in the arm by shrapnel at Gallipoli. He wrote a report of his experiences to his father.

LANDING AT THE DARDANELLES. (1915, June 30). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 3. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151622559


Gallipoli Peninsula, Turkey. October 1915. Ground where men of 14th and 15th Battalions were driven to shelter from shrapnel on Anzac on 25 April to 26 April 1915. Photograph by CEW Bean. AWM ID G00925A


On 8 August 1915, Will Randall was reported missing after the Battle of Sari Bair, the last major engagement of the Gallipoli campaign. Three officers of the 14th Battalion and 33 other ranks were killed and 3 officers and 126 other ranks missing. Randall, who served with D company, was one of the 129 missing.  The Battalion's strength before the battle had been 14 officers and 560 other ranks


Roll call of B Company, 14th Battalion after the unsuccessful offensive on 8 August 1915. AWM ID A01225

On 6 October 1915 the Ottoman Red Crescent Society reported that Randall was a prisoner of the Turkish.

Letter to Edward Randall, father of Will Randall, April 1916. Folio 45 of NAA B2455, Randall W. 

For the Empire. (1916, December 2). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 2. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151685143
Thought to be Belemedick Railway Construction employees and prisoner of war huts. Australian PoWs in Turkey were employed for quite a time on the Taurus Mountains Railway. AWM ID H19397




From
From the Australian War Memorial: Australian Red Cross Wounded and Missing Enquiry Bureau/Box 224/Wallet 2 / 532 Private Randall, William

Letter from Edward Randall, father of Will Randall, March 1918. Folio 34 of NAA B2455, Randall W.

Letter from Edward Randall, father of Will Randall, March 1918. Folio 26 of NAA B2455, Randall W.
 The turn-around of letters was slow but correspondence did get through.

For the Empire. (1918, October 23). Avoca Free Press and Farmers' and Miners' Journal (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), p. 2. Retrieved November 11, 2014, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article151682955

In December 1918, after being a prisoner for three years three months, Will Randall returned to Egypt and from there to Australia. He was discharged from the army on 9 April 1919.