Sgt
Kenneth William Vear

Information about birth

Year of birth:
1893
Place of birth:
Burwood, Victoria

General information

Profession:
Orchardist

Army information

Country:
Australia
Force:
Australian Imperial Force
Rank:
Sergeant
Service number:
513
Enlistment date:
18/01/1916
Enlistment place:
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Units:
 —  Australian Infantry, 37th Bn.  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
03/10/1917
Place of death:
Potsdam, Zonnebeke, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)
Age:
24

Cemetery

White House Cemetery
Plot: 3
Row: L
Grave: 7

Distinctions and medals 2

Points of interest 2

#1 Enlistment place
#2 ‘Place of death’

My story

Sergeant Kenneth William Vear was part of the B Company, 37th Australiain Infantry AIF (10th Brigade, 3rd Australian Division). He was appointed corporal in April 1916, after which he left for England in June. He was promoted Lance corporal in November 1916 upon his arrival in France. In March 1917, he was promoted Sergeant.

During the Battle of Messines in June 1917 Sergeant Vear was wounded in action (gunshot wound to the cheek). He re-joined his unit on 10 August 1917.

On 3th October, Sergeant Vear, together with other commanding officers, went to inspect the area in which they were to attack the following day. On 4 October 1917 the 37th Battalion was to participate in the Battle of Broodseinde, a phase of the Battle of Passchendaele. The battalion would be formed up just North of what used to be the village of Zonnebeke. On 3 October 1917 officers and NCO’s took the opportunity of reconnoitring the route from the bivouacking area to the assembly trenches for the upcoming attack the next day. The route was marked by tape by Lt. L.J. Robertson and was known as “K” track. At 9.45 p.m. the Battalion began the approach march. It took up positions roughly between Dochy Farm and Levi Cottages and was to advance through Judah House, Springfield, Seine and Beecham towards Tyne Cot.

According to the Burial Return Sheet of the CWGC, Sergeant Vears body was recovered near the Ypres-Zonnebeke Railroad and Potsdam (D.26.c.8.4.). De coordinats in his Service Record mention a burial place closer to Vampir Farm (D.26.a.3.5.). The eye witness testimonies in his Red Cross Wounded and Missing Files are somewhat contradictory. Some state they saw his fieldgrave. Other say they saw him going over the top/near the frontline and taken back wounded. Seargeant Vear is was reburied at White House Cemetery, where he is still remembered today.

Files 1

Sources 8

Australian War Memorial
https://www.awm.gov.au/advanced-search/people?people_preferred_name=vear&people_service_number=513&people_unit=
Sources used
Australian War Memorial, War Diary
https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/C1345116?image=1
Sources used
CWGC
https://www.cwgc.org/find-war-dead/casualty/455057/vear,-kenneth-william/
Sources used
Mc Carthy C., Passchendaele Day-by-Day account, Unicorn Publishing Group, 2018, London, pp. 110-114.
Sources used
McNicol N.G., The Thirty-Seventh : History of the Thirty-Seventh Battalion A.I.F. East Sussex: Naval and Military Press, East Sussex, pp.131-138.
Sources used
National Archives of Australia
https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/DetailsReports/ItemDetail.aspx?Barcode=8397677&isAv=N
Sources used
The AIF-Project
https://www.aif.adfa.edu.au/showPerson?pid=308459
Sources used
The Long Long Trail
http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/order-of-battle-of-divisions/3rd-australian-division/
Sources used