Pte
Walace Richard Meller

Information about birth

Year of birth:
1899
Place of birth:
Hornsby, New South Wales, Australia

General information

Profession:
Warehouseman

Army information

Country:
Australia
Force:
Australian Imperial Force
Rank:
Private
Service number:
5449
Enlistment date:
28/02/1916
Enlistment place:
Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia
Units:
 —  Australian Infantry, 17th Bn. (New South Wales)  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
20/09/1917
Place of death:
Anzac, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)
Age:
18

Memorial

Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 3

#1 Place of birth
#2 Enlistment place
#3 ‘Place of death’

My story

Private Walace Richard Meller was part of the 17th Battalion Australian Infantry, 5th Australian Brigade, 2nd Australian Division. His battalion took part in the Battle of the Menin Road on 20 September 1917 and was responsible for taking the third objective near Garter Point left of Polygon Wood. The two first objectives were taking successfully and the 17th Battalion moved up to the third objective, which was also taken successfully. Private Meller was first reported missing and later reported killed in action. The 17th Battalion A.I.F. suffered a few casualties going up to the second objective but it is most likely that Private Meller was killed taking the third objective. In his Red Cross Wounded and Missing File that 21 men of the 17th Battalion were buried during the night of the 20/21 September, from which only 5 were known by name. The others were buried as unknown Australian soldiers. They were buried in the vicinity of Anzac House. It could be possible that Walace was one of them.

Files 1

Sources 8

AIF Project
https://www.aif.adfa.edu.au/showPerson?pid=206217
Sources used
Chris McCarthy, Passchendaele : The Day-by-Day account, 2018, 80-83.
Sources used
CWGC
https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/1599687/meller,-wallace-richard/
Sources used
MacKenzie K.W., The story of the seventeenth battalion A .I .F. : in the Great War 1914-1918, 1946, pp. 192-193
Sources used
Red Cross Wounded and Missing File and Embarkation Roll
https://www.awm.gov.au/advanced-search?query=meller+5449
Sources used
Service Record
https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/DetailsReports/ItemDetail.aspx?Barcode=8006998&isAv=N
Sources used
TheLongLongTrail
https://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/
Sources used
War Diary 17th Bn. Australian Infantry
https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/C1339175
Sources used