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06 October 2009

Private Percy Wade

Photo: AWM P04576.001
Percy Wade was a son of Robert Henry Wade, who ran brickworks located near Parham Road, Eden Hills. He worked for his father and the family lived in a house which still stands on Wade Street, Eden Hills. Before the war he was active in the Blackwood, Belair and Coromandel Boys’ Club, the Blackwood Football Club and the Coromandel 2nd XI cricket team.

He enlisted on 19 October 1916 at the age of 29, and joined the 43rd Battalion in France in November 1917. Whilst he was with the battalion, it helped stop the German Spring offensive at Villers-Bretonneux in April 1918, took part in the Battle of Hamel in July 1918, and in August 1918 helped drive the Germans back to the Hindenburg Line. On 1 September 1918, as the 43rd Battalion commenced its attack on Mont St Quentin, Percy was hit by machinegun fire and died before his mate could finish dressing his wounds. He was buried where he fell but his burial place could not be located after the battle, and as a result his name is on the Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, along with many other Australians with no known grave.
His brother, Alfred Wade served with the 51st Battalion and survived the war.

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