Tribute for soldier who was killed in France in World War I
David Horton didn’t go to war because he fell into the “no man’s land” between the end of the National Service and the beginning of conscription for Vietnam.
But during his time working for the wheat board around Wowan, as a member of the Uniting Church, he delivered the clerical address which reflected on the troops’ sacrifices.
Now retired and living in Koongal, Mr Horton usually visits the nearby meatworkers’ cenotaph on Lakes Creek Rd the day before, in addition to observing Anzac Day itself.
Like so many others, this year, he will stand in his driveway at 6am to remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice “for King and Country”.
Mr Horton provided The Morning Bulletin with the following story about his father’s cousin, Arthur Horton, who was buried in France during World War I:
Arthur Horton, second son of Joseph and Elizabeth Horton, and brother of Maria Voss, enlisted in the Australian Military Forces A.I.F. on September 21, 1916. He took the Oath to serve his King and Country on September 22, 1916, at Toowoomba, until the end of World War I. His regimental number was 3165.
Arthur was a fine looking man of 37 years and 11 months when he enlisted. He was a tall man of six feet two inches, with fresh complexion, brown eyes, dark hair and of Methodist religion.
As a private in the 52nd Battalion, he embarked at Sydney on December 22, 1916 and disembarked at Plymouth, England on March 3, 1917.
He took sick with mumps in camp and was sent to Parkeshouse Hospital in England on April 10, 1917.
Arthur proceeded overseas to France on July 2, 1917, marched in procession at Havre, and joined his unit on July 19, 1917.
Later he contracted influenza and was hospitalised again, this time in France.
He rejoined battalion on November 1, 1917. He went on leave to the UK on March 17, 1918, but was recalled to join the unit on March 24.
Arthur was wounded in action in the field in France on April 25, 1918.
He received neck and eye injuries from shrapnel.
He was transferred to base on May 17. Later he was transferred from 52nd battalion to the 49th battalion, and back into the field.
On the field in France, Arthur Horton was killed in action, on August12, 1918.
Personal effects received at headquarters from the field on October 10, 1918 was one parcel (sealed) containing YMCA wallet, letters, photos and cards. These were forwarded to his father, Joseph Horton, Nevilletown, Clifton, Darling Downs, Queensland.
Joseph Horton wrote and requested scrolls, badges etc. of his late son. According to records, these were dispatched later.
Arthur’s mother Elizabeth Horton died very soon after his enlistment.
Those two years would have been a very sad time for Joseph Horton and his family, losing his wife and then his son in such circumstances.