The Australian Boer War Memorial
Anzac Parade Canberra

Sergeant (Later Warrant Officer Class 1) Walter Armstrong

Ancestor Details

Ancestor's Name: Walter Armstrong

Ancestor's date of birth: 01/01/1870

Ancestor's date of death: 19/03/1938

Cause of Death: Cerebral Haemorrhage

Service Number: 3567

Colony or State of enlistment: Not Applicable, Place of Enlistment: Bury Lancashire UK

Unit: 2nd Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers

Rank attained in Boer War: SGT, Date Effective: Detail not provided

Highest Rank attained (if served after war): WO1, Date Effective: Detail not provided

Murray Page: Not Applicable

Contingent: Not Applicable

Ship: Detail not provided Memorial details: Detail not provided

Decorations: Edward V11 Coronation Medal, Queens Soudan Medal, Queens South Africa Medal, 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Khedives Soudan Medal, Victory Medal, Croix de Guerre.

Personal Characteristics: Detail not provided

Reasons to go and fight: Career Soldier

Details of service in war: Prior to the Boer War he served in the Soudan, Omdurman and Relief of Khartoum campaigns. In the Boer War he was at: Spoin Kop, Relief of Ladysmith.

Service and life after the Boer War: He was discharged from the British Army 16th January 1913 to pension,by which time he was the father of 8 children. He emigrated to Australia on the 19th March 1914. Within 4 weeks this remarkable man at the age of 41 years and 4 months,he dropped his age by 3 or 4 years, enlisted as 967 Sgt Walter Armstrong into the Artillery of the Australian Imperial Force and went off to war with them to Egypt 1914, Gallipoli 1915, France 4th Division Artillery. .

He was quickly promoted to CSM and later RSM. Having survived many battles he was posted to the UK as an instructor in some capacity until his discharge back to Australia in 1920.

When the Australian troops were training in Eygpt prior to the Galliploi campaign Lord Kitchener regognised him and said "What are you doing here?" Walter's response was "Same as you Sir".

As his family did not arrive in Australia until after his discharge from the Army in 1920 he did not know his two sons both in British units died in France, Harold in April 1918 and Walter in September 1918. Both are interred at Ribecourt Road Cemetery Trescault.

After the war he returned to England to pick up his wife and family and they came to Australia on the 'Lucy Woerman' in 1919.

Walter Armstrong died at Lidcombe Hospital NSW in 1938.

This is a fine story of a man who served the then Empire for at least 31 years and saw more action than was imaginable.

Descendant Details

Name of Descendant: Audrey McLeod, Westlake QLD

Relationship to Ancestor: Grand Daughter

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RUSI of NSW Boer War Battlefields