Reuben John Parsons sends news to his mother is Peisley street that he has been evacuated to hospital in England after being shot in the left leg. He has had one operation already and is awaiting a second. Soldiers’ Letters – Cheering The Wounded
Joseph Watts of Summer Street receives a letter from his son Charles Edwin Watts, who says that his unit in France has just captured 1000 prisoners. He adds that has been really enjoying the biscuits, chocolates and cigarettes that were in his most recent care package. Bravo Australia – Parcels From Orange
Millthorpe welcomes home Percy Francis McDonnell and James John Thompson from the war. Soldiers Home Again
The parents of Austin Herbert Edmonds receive news that he is dangerously ill with malignant malarial fever. Trooper Austin Edmonds
Informal group portrait of soldiers from the 18th Battalion prior to embarkation c23 September 1915. Ernest Goode is in the back row on the far left. Image courtesy Australian War Memorial.
On 4 August 1916 Private Ernest Harold Goode was wounded in action at Pozieres in France. A private in the 18th Battalion 6th Reinforcements “Ern” received a gunshot wound to the head amid heavy enemy shelling.
Private Goode was evacuated to the nearby 2nd Australian Field Ambulance. The following day he was transferred to the 3rd Casualty Clearing Station, then admitted to the 11th General Hospital at Camiers. On 9 August he was conveyed to the hospital ship HS Dieppe at Calais and evacuated to hospital in England.
Private Goode recovered from his wounds; he rejoined his unit in France in November 1916.
Ernest was wounded a second time, but this time his injuries proved fatal. On 25 February 1917 he was stretcher bearing at Butte de Warlencourt when a shell exploded nearby killing him instantly. Eyewitnesses claimed that he died from concussion, and that he body was unblemished.
Company Sergeant Major Butler of the 18th Battalion later observed:
Private Goode was well known to many for his excellent conduct and good service as a stretcher bearer
Pte. Goode was born locally, spent all his school days here, and enlisted here not very long after the beginning of the war. He bore an unblemished reputation, and an upright character, and was highly respected by all who knew him.
Ernest was born in Millthorpe in 1885, the sixth of ten children of farmer William Goode and his wife Elizabeth Grace nee Pascoe. He attended Millthorpe Public School and later took up farming.
In July 1915 Ernest enlisted at Liverpool. He embarked for overseas service on 2 November 1915 and proceeded to Egypt, where he served until joining the British Expeditionary Force in France in March 1916.
On Sunday 1 April 1917 the Reverend WT Dyer preached his final sermon at Millthorpe Methodist Church. During the sermon he paid tribute to Ernest and the congregation joined in singing the following hymn in his memory.
Thou who hast all Thy people in Thy sight,
To Thee we come.
Be Thou their guide, their comfort and their light
Afar from home.
Keep Thou their souls, in steadfastness and right
Remember, Lord, Australia’s sons to-night.
Gone from the humble cottage in the dell,
From home, sweet home.
Gone from the dear ones whom they love so well
To face the storm;
Gone from the mansion to defend the right-
Remember, Lord Australia’s sons to-night.
Sons are now dying, ’tis the cost of war,
Have Mercy, Lord;
Wilt Thou prepare them ere they cross the bar?
Have mercy, Lord:
Burst Thou Death’s glooms by Heaven’s celestial light
Remember, Lord, Australia’s sons to-night.
Be Thou their refuge in the darkest hour,
Be Thou their stay;
Stretch forth Thy hand, shew Thine almighty power
In Thine own way;
Thou did’st on Galilee reveal Thy might-
Oh! comfort, Lord, Australia’s sons to-night.
On Sunday 9 November 1919 Captain Chaplain Wilson conducted a memorial service at Frape’s Hall at Millthorpe for local fallen heroes, including Ernest.
Ernest Harold Goode is commemorated on the Millthorpe Methodist Church Honour Roll and on panel number 85 on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.
Ernest’s brother George Henry Goode also served in WWI; he was killed in action in France on 2 June 1918.
Former Leader staffer Bernard James Hartigan sends news from Palestine. He says he is “as right as pie, getting well nursed and looked after” after having “stopped one”. He then describes his trip to the Holy Land: “it is lovely, green sprinkled with red poppies and white daisies, with little streams of water trickling down the sides of the mountain, making a very pretty picture.” Our Soldiers – Trooper Bernard Hartigan His Narrow Escape From Death
James John Fleming was born in Orange in 1886. His parents James Patrick and Ellen Letitia Fleming lived at Eulalie in Stuart Town and James snr worked as a miner.
On 16 July 1917 James jnr enlisted for war service at Albury; he was 31 years of age. His younger brother Hughy had enlisted in Queensland in January 1916. James proceeded to Liverpool camp and embarked for overseas service on 31 October.
Private James Fleming disembarked at Devonport on Boxing Day 1917 and was marched in to the 1st Training Battalion at Sutton Veny. Two weeks later he was admitted to the Group Clearing Hospital suffering from mumps.
James was discharged from hospital on 22 January 1918. He returned to the 1st Training Battalion for a further three months before proceeding to France on 23 April. James’ brother Hughy was killed in action in Belgium one month earlier, on 16 March. It is unclear whether James was aware of his brother’s death.
On 30 April 1918 James was taken on strength with the 3rd Battalion. On the evening of 20 June 1918 he was serving in the trenches at Strazeele in northern France when an enemy shell fell nearby, instantly killing Fleming and two others.
When James enlisted he nominated his father as his next of kin (his mother having died in 1902). He named his cousin Rachael Charlton of Dubbo as executor and beneficiary of his will.
James snr had died in Stuart Town on 8 May 1918, just six weeks before James jnr’s death in action. The coroner returned the verdict:
The deceased died from the effects of poisoning self-administered.
James snr had committed suicide by ingesting strychnine, presumably after learning of Hughy’s death.
In February 1919 Rachael received James jnr’s personal effects. Both James’ and Hughy’s war medals were issued to their brother Ambrose.
James John Fleming is commemorated on panel number 36 on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.
Mrs Parsons of London advises James Nancarrow of Moulder Street that a pocket book belonging to their son Reginald Claude Nancarrow has been found on the battlefield following his death in action. The Late Lieut R Nancarrow