William Berry was born on 12 March 1894 in Nansori, Fiji. His parents were William and Ethel May (née Tufnell) Berry. He attended Scotch from 1905 to 1910. William was a boarder. On leaving in 1910 he attended Toowoomba Grammar School in Queensland. Later he was at Hawkesbury Agricultural College. He was a nephew of William Littlejohn, the Principal of Scotch College.
William was a farmer when he enlisted on 6 September 1915 in Brisbane. He served in the 47th Battalion with the rank of Private. His Regimental Number was 4437.
William died on 7 August 1916 at Pozieres, France. He was 22 years of age.
He was farming in Queensland at the outbreak of war. After four unsuccessful attempts to enlist (reportedly on the grounds of ‘chest measurement’), he was accepted into the AIF in September 1915. He was attached to the reinforcements for the 15th Battalion, and joined the 47th Battalion on 1 April 1916.
He left for Egypt in late January 1916, before being sent to France in June. The Scotch Collegian reports that he was twice involved in heavy fighting in France, and that he volunteered as a scout. On 7 August he was killed at Pozieres.
The Scotch Collegian says that his death was ‘instantaneous’ and caused by a high explosive shell. None of his personal effects made it back to his widowed mother in Australia.
William Berry has no known grave, but is commemorated at the Villers-Bretonneux Memorial, France.
- Australian War Memorial – Roll of Honour
- Mishura Scotch Database
- National Archives of Australia – B2455, BERRY W
- Scotch Collegian 1917
- The AIF Project - https://www.aif.adfa.edu.au/showPerson?pid=21390