• Ben Harold Bailey

Army / Flying Corps
  • 11th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • 3rd Brigade
  • Private

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  • 1914–1915 Star
  • British War Medal
  • Victory Medal
  • Enlistment - WW1

    Perth WA, Australia

  • Birth

    Bunbury, WA, Australia

Stories and comments
    • Ben Harold BAILEY
    • Posted by Mapping our Anzacs story, Wednesday, 20 November 2013

    Ben was a member of the (West Guildford) Bassendean Volunteer Fire Brigade. In response to his death, his father and brother joined up.

    • Ben Harold Bailey – 11th Australian Infantry Battalion
    • Posted by blacksmith, Monday, 19 October 2015

    Follow the links to Australian War Memorial, Department Of Veterans’ Affairs, Commonwealth War Graves Commission, State Library of W.A., University of N.S.W., Everyman Remembered, and NLA `Trove` websites to view the images and other articles as they appeared in the newspapers of the day. It's only the truth that matters. Closure for the loved ones, family and friends of a fallen soldier is extremely important. The official date attributed to the death of Pte. Ben Bailey is recorded as 2 May 1915, and apart from his mates who witnessed his death, there would be few who could have known the actual truth in the days and weeks following the historic landing. However, I am sure that his mother and family have long recognised April 25 1915 as the correct date, as a result of the thoughtful actions of several of his mates who were with him at the time, and to the best of their ability passed on the sad news. In a letter on Pte. Bailey’s file written by C. M. Seifken, father of 354 Otto Seifken, to Mrs Jane Bailey dated October 12 1915, he speaks of her sons last moments as they were relayed to him. “Dear Mrs Bailey, I have just received a long letter from my son Otto, now in hospital at London. It is the first chance he had of writing a long letter, and he told me all about the landing, Thinking that you would like to know about your sons last moments, I am writing this to let you know. There were thirty of them in the boat from the troopship, and only fifteen survived. Ben was hit by a bullet, and died instantly and without speaking. They had only been on shore for five minutes when this happened. Otto says he misses him terribly as they had always been together, and he says he would like to have a photo of Ben if you had one to spare that you let us have to send to him. I remain, Yours sincerely, C.M. Seifken” A second more informative letter is on his file from Private W. Bruton which supports the comments of Pte. Seifken. “Dear Mrs Bailey, I now take the pleasure of writing you a few lines. I would have done so before but I have been in hospital, and was not able to do so. You will no doubt no by this time that I called to see you, but you were not at home, and I would like here to explain the reason of my not calling to see you on my return from England to Australia. It is a very hard job for anyone to go around and see the people belonging to comrades who had fallen on the field, and bring back memories to their minds. I can tell you that it hurts me very deeply, and when I talk of dear Ben it is always with deep regret that such a fine chap as he was, should have been taken in the prime of life. I think I can say with truth that the death of Ben, was felt very deeply by the whole of the Battalion as he was loved by all, and respected. It is a hard thing to say Mrs Bailey, but it is true, that the death Ben died was a glorious death, fighting for his country he suffered no pain, death was instanious, owing to him having been shot right through the centre of the head. He was a brave lad Mrs Bailey, while the bullets were flying around us and just about five minutes before his death, he was singing cheer words low the glad some morn as dawned. We had got out of the boat and ran about 20 yards, and was told to lay down in cover but cover was very scarce. Ben was lying in between Otto Seifken and myself, and the order was just given to fix bainots when Ben gives a groan and rolls down a bit of a slope, he hardly moved after he was shot. He is buried where he fell about 20 yards from the waters edge and there is a little wooden cross that we placed with is name and number and these words, killed in action the 25th April 1915, at the head of is grave. If there is anything more you would like to no of Ben and if it lays in my powers to tell Mrs Bailey I will only be to glad to do so. Please let me no if you receive this letter safe. I remain, Yours truly, W. Burton."

    • Ben Harold Bailey – 11th Australian Infantry Battalion
    • Posted by blacksmith, Monday, 19 October 2015

    Our Soldier Heroes. The war is being brought home closer and closer to us when day by day the casualty lists are published. On Monday last the sad news was received of the death of Private B. H. Bailey, "C" Company, 11th Battalion A.I.F., the eldest son of Mr. and Mrs. F. Bailey, of Lord st. West Guildford. He was born at Bunbury 21 years ago, and resided with his parents in West Guildford for about the past ten years, and attended the Guildford, West Guildford, and Perth Boys State Schools. In 1908 he captained the West Guildford Football Club when that newly formed school won its first premiership ("C" grade). Upon leaving school he was closely connected with all kinds of sport, his favorite branches being football and swimming, in both of which he excelled. For some years he played with the Deakin (first rate) Football Club, until last year, when he rose to the senior ranks with Midland Junction, for which team he did yeoman service. He was an active member of the Guildford and District Amateur Swimming Club for the past five years, and has won a number of interclub races, amongst which was the Kieran Memorial half mile handicap in 1911. He was also a member of the West Guildford Volunteer Fire Brigade, and the West Guildford Lodge of the Grand United Order of Oddfellows. His cheerfulness and happy disposition won for him a popularity which will for ever be remembered by those who came in contact with him, and the deepest sympathy is extended to the bereaved family from a large circle of friends, for the loss of one who was amongst the first to volunteer, and was unluckily amongst the first to fall. The Swan Express Friday 25 June 1915.

    • Ben Harold Bailey – 11th Australian Infantry Battalion
    • Posted by blacksmith, Monday, 19 October 2015

    Memorial Service At St Marks, West Guildford. A very impressive memorial service was held in St. Mark's Anglican Church on Sunday evening last, in memory of Private H. B. Bailey, of West Guildford, who was killed in action at the Dardanelles. The building was completely filled, seating accommodation being taxed to the fullest extent. The service commenced with the hymn "Brief life is here our portion." Ordinary evensong followed, with the 90th Psalm. The lessons were taken I. Samuel v. and I. Corinthians xv. 20. The anthem "Blest are the departed" from Spohrs "Last Judgment" was then contributed by the choir. Special prayers were said for those at the war, the wounded and dying: also for their bereaved relatives and friends. After singing the hymn "Now the Laborer's Task is o'er" an address was given by Mr. R. Lawrence, student in charge. Mr. Lawrence based his address 'on the words: "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." He asked what were the objects of the special gathering that evening? Some people might say " You cannot recall the dead, and possibly it will add tears to the eyes of the living." They could not recall, it was true, yet from their lives and experiences they might hold in memory and respect what was good and profit from consideration of a life of valour and sacrifice known to them all. They might not all be called to die so gallantly, crowned with honor, but that did not mean that they were to have no gallantry at all. There were heroes of death and there were heroes of life. Some were there that night because they knew the late Private Bailey, some out of bitter grief and sorrow, others out of real sympathy, the grandeur of deepest respect, and the recognition of noble achievement. "A life laid down," had been given for the purposes of righting wrong in the world, for the protection and defence of the weak, for the establishment of justice and righteousness, for the maintenance of our national honor, welfare and safety. Was this and other lives to be sacrificed for what was noblest, in vain? Good and genuine as their grief and sorrow was, real as were their sympathies, regrets and respects, did they stand worthy? Could they really believe that they would fill that place that evening to think of that promising young life, strong in manhood, vigorous in action, unpretentious in character, always bright and cheerful, the very joy and sacred life of a mother's heart, yet coldly and indifferently remain and live just as they were? Such characters could not be for nothing - even miseries, trials, calamities, awful sacrifice of human life, served some noble purpose. The hymn "On the Resurrection Morning" followed the address, and the service concluded with the sounding of "The Last Post" by Trumpeters Asquith and Christie, followed with the "Dead March in Saul," rendered by the organist, Mr. J. Davis The Swan Express Friday 9 July 1915.