Simpson, John George


War Service:
Private 6139 JOHN GEORGE SIMPSON of the 19th Infantry Battalion, Australian Imperial Force died on 9 October 1917, aged 40.

According to the records of the Australian National Archives he enlisted on 22 June 1916. On his attestation form he says he had previously served for 4 years with the 1st Volunteer Battalion, Royal West Surrey Regt. He sailed from Sydney on 25 October 1916 on the troopship Ascanius with 17th Reinforcements arriving at Devonport on 28 December 1916. On 24 February 1917 he crossed to France from Folkestone travelling on the ss Golden Eagle, finally joining his unit on 10 March.

The Battalion War Diary says that about 12.20pm on 9 October part of ‘C’ Company of 19th Infantry cleared the enemy from Daisy Wood near Ypres and set up a series of outposts. According to a witness John Simpson was on sentry duty at about 2.30pm when a shell landed nearby killing him instantly.

He is buried in Passchendaele New British Cemetery.

Location of Memorial:
He is also remembered on the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and the memorial at St Bartholomew’s church, Sydenham.

He was born in Sydenham, the son of John and Caroline Simpson. He may well be the John George Simpson who married Isabella Jane Sharp in Wandsworth in the spring of 1903. A Mr and Mrs John and Isabella Jane Simpson sailed to Sydney from London in 1912.

At the time of enlistment he and his wife Isabella Jane were living at 40 Goodsir Street, Rozelle, Sydney where he had been working as a ships’ painter in the dockyards at Cockatoo Island.


Contributed By: Andy Pepper

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