Augustine ‘Gus’ Leo Williams

September 6, 2015

WILLIAMS, Augustine -‘Gus’ Leo- – – – SPC 1913-1914

DoB:- – 1894, Echuca

Father:- – William John Williams

Mother:- – Hannah Anne, nee Collopy

Service No:- 5237

Rank:- – Private

Unit:- – 8th Battalion

Augustine Leo Williams enlisted in the AIF on 18 January 1916. He was a single man, aged 21 years and five months. He was five feet four and three quarter inches tall, with a medium complexion, grey eyes and dark brown hair. He worked as a Selector.

Gus Williams left Australia aboard the Suffolk, on 1 April 1916, arriving at Suez on 11 May. He spent the rest of that month in Egypt, undergoing further training, then proceeded to Plymouth, England on 8 June 1916, where he marched into training camp at Chiseldon.

Private Williams was attached to the 8th Battalion in September 1916, and proceeded overseas to France to reinforce the unit. He joined the battalion in the Field on 2 October. He was admitted to hospital for dental treatment in November, and early the following year, in January 1917 was in hospital again, this time for treatment for Scabies. He rejoined his unit on 8 March 1917. A few months later Williams was treated for a total of 16 days in the venereal diseases hospital.

On 23 August 1918, Private Williams was killed in action near Amiens, France. Eyewitness reports reveal what occurred -“

-‘-¦ I was close to Williams when he was shot. He was hit by 7 Machine Gun bullets, a couple of which passed through my tunic. He was shot through the body -¦ I knew this lad well, he was my Batman and a good lad -¦’

-‘-¦ He was with me about 6am on 23 August just after the hop over. We were about 50 yards West of St Denis’ Wood and about 150 yards South of Main Amiens St Quentin Road. A burst of machine gun bullets hit him, two through the stomach, one in chest, one in head and killed him instantly. I picked him up to dress him, but found he was dead -¦’

Gus was 23 years of age. He is remembered at the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, France.