No.3359 Harry Huntington Rhoades
Harry Huntington Rhoades was born in Brisbane in December 1886, the eldest of four children born to Thomas and Eva Rhoades.
In 1913, Harry married Victorian girl Elizabeth Adamson, and they set up home in Ballarat Road, Footscray, with Harry working as a salesman. In 1915, their first child Eric was born and in May 1917 their daughter Eva followed. By then the family were living in Anderson Street, Yarraville, where Harry was a fishmonger. Eric was two and Eva just six months old when Harry enlisted in November 1917, aged 30.
Harry was appointed as a Private to the 38th Battalion, 8th Reinforcements. He trained at Broadmeadows before departing Melbourne on 22 December 1917, bound for England aboard HMAT Ulysses. He arrived in Southampton docks in February 1918 and from there travelled to Sutton Mandeville Military College, which formed part of the vast military training and transit camp in Fovant, Wiltshire.
Just three weeks after arriving, Harry was hospitalised with 'debility', a general term for significant physical weakness due to illness. He spent nearly six weeks in the hospital before being discharged. Less than four months later, he was readmitted with a left foot injury, this time spending over two months in hospital. He was discharged in mid October 1918, only to be back in hospital again just six days later suffering from influenza, at the height of the world pandemic. Harry spent the the rest of his service in hospital and at the convalescent depot suffering ill health.
In July 1919, Harry embarked on his return to Australia per the HT Valencia.
On his return, he was discharged as medically unfit due to bronchitis. Harry settled in Laverton with his family where he worked as a grocer for many years. The year following his return, Elizabeth had another baby daughter, Thelma.
Sadly, Harry’s only son Eric died of illness aged 28 during World War II. Harry himself went on to live to the age of 74. He died in Caulfield, Melbourne on 20 May 1961, and was buried in Fawkner Cemetery (now Fawkner Memorial Park) in Melbourne's north.
Medals and Entitlements:
- British War Medal