Pte
Frank Henry Cole

Information about birth

Year of birth:
1895
Place of birth:
Greater London, Woolwich, England, United Kingdom

General information

Profession:
Farmer
Religion:
Church of England

Army information

Country:
Australia
Force:
Australian Imperial Force
Rank:
Private
Service number:
950
Enlistment date:
05/02/1915
Enlistment place:
Donald, Victoria, Australia
Units:
 —  Australian Infantry, 22nd Bn. (Victoria)  (Last known unit)

Information about death

Date of death:
04/10/1917
Place of death:
Zonnebeke Lake, Belgium
Cause of death:
Killed in action (K.I.A.)
Age:
22

Memorial

Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial
Panel: Bay 23 stone P

Distinctions and medals 3

Additional information

Private Frank Henry Cole emigrated from England to Australia when 18 years of age. The former farmer enlisted 2 years later the 22nd Battalion AIF, part of the 2nd Division, 6th Brigade.

His WorldWar I adventure started in Gallipoli from August 1915 until he was evacuated to a hospital with jaundice in October 1915. Frank was also wounded at Bullecourt on 3 May 1917: gunshot wound in the face. He was evacuated to England for several months to recover.

On 4th October 1917 the 2nd Division was ready to start up the Battle of Broodseinde, part of the Battle of Passchendaele. (otherwise named Third Battle of Ypres).
By 04.10 a.m. the assaulting waves of the 6th Brigade were formed up on their tapes disposed to attack in 4 waves on a front of 4 Companies.
At 05.35 a.m. the Germans opened a heavy bombardment and caused many casualties on the jumping off line.
The English Barrage started at 06.00 a.m. (Zero Hour). The advancing waves almost at once encountered the Germans in force. Parties with fixed bayonets were met advancing. It soon became evident that they had anticipated a German attack.
Chasing the retreating Germans, the Brigade skirted Zonnebeke Lake and helped capture the village itself. On the way they captured 4 anti-tank field guns and carried on over their first objective without stopping, although some companies were brought back tot he first objective. The final objective was taken, including Broodseinde Village.

Private Frank Cole, age 22, was killed instantly when struck by a shell while waiting in a trench to attack on the 4 October 1917. An eye witness stated that Frank Cole was “terribly knocked around, and his brother was wounded by the same shell.”

His younger brother Private Wilfred Edgar Cole, 19 of age, also of the 22nd Battalion died of wounds over five days 9/10 in Rouen, France.

A third brother, Engineer Lieutenant Harold Arthur Cole HMS Bombala Royal Navy Reserve was killed in action 25th April 1918, age 27.

Frank has no known grave and is remembered on the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial in Belgium, Bay 23, stone P.

Connection to other soldiers 2

Cole Wilfred Edgard
Brother
Wilfred Edgard Cole 
Brother

Files 1

Sources 8

"Passchendaele, The Day-by-Day Account",McCarthy C., Arms&ArmourPress, London, 1995, page 98-99"
Sources used
AIF Project
https://www.aif.adfa.edu.au/showPerson?pid=57353
Sources used
CWGC
https://www.cwgc.org/find-records/find-war-dead/casualty-details/1598370/frank-henry-cole/
Sources used
Service Record
https://recordsearch.naa.gov.au/SearchNRetrieve/Interface/ViewImage.aspx?B=3267487
Sources used
The Australian War Memorial
https://www.awm.gov.au/advanced-search/people?people_preferred_name=cole&people_service_number=950&people_unit=
Sources used
The Long Long Trail
http://www.longlongtrail.co.uk/army/order-of-battle-of-divisions/2nd-australian-division/
Sources used
War Diary 22nd Battalion
https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/C1356339
Sources used
War Diary 6th Brigade
https://www.awm.gov.au/collection/C1343090
Sources used