No.596 Private Arthur Heatherton
Arthur Heatherton, a 21 year old labourer who was born in West Footscray, enlisted in the AIF on 20 August, 1914. His next of kin is named as his mother Florence Heatherton of Coronation Street, Footscray.
He joined E Company, 7th Battalion, which was formed within two weeks of war being declared and consisted of recruits primarily from Victoria. It was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel H.E. “Pompey” Elliot who achieved legendary status with his men during the First World War – especially in France.
The Battalion sailed for Alexandria in Egypt to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF), arriving in early December 1914. There followed a period of intense training before the Battalion set sail once again – this time to participate in the landings at Gallipoli.
At around 5.30am on 25 April, 1915, the men of the 7th Battalion headed towards the beach as part of the second wave. Around 400 of them were to become casualties on the first day – one of whom was 596 Private Arthur Heatherton serving with C Company.
In the confusion of those early days, Private Heatherton was reported as wounded, but a Board of Enquiry held on 22 May, 1915, determined that he had been killed in action on the first day. By the same date, the 7th Battalion war diary recorded that 808 officers and other ranks had been killed, wounded or were missing in action in just less than a month.
Private Heatherton’s older brother, 1539 Private Albert 'Bert' Heatherton, 14th Battalion, had also participated in the landing, but had been evacuated due to illness – an illness that would claim his life barely two years later.
596 Private Arthur Heatherton has no known grave. He is one of the 4,932 Australian troops remembered at the Lone Pine Memorial, Gallipoli (panel reference 29).
Medals and Entitlements:
- 1914/15 Star
- British War Medal
- Victory Medal
- King's Message and Memorial Scroll - received by his brother Mr. W.H. Heatheron,
Lest we forget
http://www.awm.gov.au/units/unit_11194.asp - AWM 7th Battalion, AIF history
Service record: NAA B2455, Heatherton A 596