Bert William Greathead


Birth Date:
Death Date:
9 Oct 1917
Service Branch:
20th Battalion, Australian Infantry
Service Number:

Bert’s parents were Henry Percy and Eliza Greathead née Hunt both born in England. They married on 3 March 1889 and in April they set off on the Steam Ship Lusitania in April 1889 on an unassisted passage arriving in Sydney on 4 May 1889 to set up home in Australia.

Their first son was born on 28 January 1890 but died shortly after. Bert William Greathead their third son was born in 1894 in Kingsdale, Goulburn, Victoria, Australia.

He enlisted as a Private on 12 November 1915 into the 20th Battalion, 11 Reinforcement of the Australian Infantry. He was described as aged 21 years 11 months, being 5 feet 8 inches tall. He weighed 4 stone 6 pounds and had a chest measurement of 37 inches. His complexion was dark, he had blue eyes and brown hair. Bert worked as a labourer. His unit embarked from Sydney, New South Wales on board HMAT A71 Nestor on 9 April 1916.

Bert was admitted to hospital with mumps in January 1917. In October 1917 he was reported as missing in action in Belgium. This was later changed to killed in action. He was awarded the Victory Medal. This was received by his father on 5 March 1928

He died on 9 October 1917 in Zonnebeke in Belgium and is buried Buttes New British Cemetery, Plot 5, Row A Grave No 18, Polygon Wood, Zonnebeke, West Vlaanderen in Belgium

He was awarded the Star medal, Victory medal No 36221 and British War Medal No 36502.

His brothers Henry Percy and Frederick William also died the same year fighting in other parts of Europe far from home. Frederick died on 8 March and Henry on 2 April 1917 both while in France

All three brothers are commemorated on a memorial Rocky Hill in Gouldburn

1917 was a very sad year for their father as not only did he lose three sons but also his wife Eliza née Hunt on 23 December 1917 in Australia.

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