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 William Matthew Currey

William Matthew Currey

Birth
Wallsend, Newcastle City, New South Wales, Australia
Death 30 Apr 1948 (aged 52)
Sydney, City of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Burial Sutherland, Sutherland Shire, New South Wales, Australia
Plot Currey was cremated and his ashes interred in the Columbarium, Panel C, position 15
Memorial ID 11235112 · View Source
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World War I Victoria Cross Recipient. Born at Wallsend, New South Wales, he was educated at Dudley and Plattsburg Public schools, then moved to Leichhardt, Sydney, where he was employed as a wireworker. He served for eighteen months in the 31st Infantry Battalion of the part time Citizen Military Forces. He enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force on October 9, 1916, and was posted as a light trench mortar battery reinforcement. He embarked from Sydney, New South Wales, on the "HMAT A24 Benalla" on November 9, 1916 and disembarked at Devonport, England on January 9, 1917. He was transferred to the 53rd Australian Infantry Battalion, 14th Brigade, 5th Australian Division on February 6 and after further training in England proceeded to France on June 14 before joining his battalion on July 7. Private Currey was awarded the Victoria Cross for his part in the Australian attack at Péronne on September 1, 1918. When his battalion suffered heavy casualties from a 77mm field gun at very close range, he without hesitation rushed forward under intense machine gun fire and succeeded in capturing the gun single handed after killing the entire crew. Later, when the advance of the left flank was checked by an enemy strong point, he crept around the flank and engaged the post with a Lewis gun. Finally, he rushed the post single handed, causing many casualties. It was entirely owing to his gallant conduct that the situation was relieved and the advance enabled to continue. Subsequently he volunteered to carry orders for the withdrawal of an isolated company, and this he succeeded in doing despite shell and rifle fire, returning later with valuable information. The following day he was gassed and admitted to a field ambulance before being transferred to England where he was when the Armistice was announced. He embarked for return to Australia on January 8, 1919 and arrived in Sydney in late February. He was discharged in Sydney on April 2 and joined the New South Wales Railways as a storeman in September. From 1930 to 1932 he had served with the 45th Battalion in the part time Citizen Military Forces and from July 8, 1940 until May 27, 1941 he was a Sergeant in Australian Instructional Corps. On May 10, he had been elected as an Australian Labor Party candidate for Kogarah in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly. He was re-elected at the 1944 and 1947 general elections but collapsed in Parliament House on April 27, 1948 and died three days later of coronary-vascular disease. He was buried at Woronora General Cemetery and Crematorium, Sutherland.

Bio by: Anthony Staunton


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 25 Jun 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11235112
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for William Matthew Currey (19 Sep 1895–30 Apr 1948), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11235112, citing Woronora Memorial Park, Sutherland, Sutherland Shire, New South Wales, Australia ; Maintained by Find A Grave .