John and Edward were the sons of Alexander and Eliza McKenzie who lived on the property ‘Blair Athole’ at Oakwood, north of Inverell. They both worked as Graziers on family properties in the district.
Edward enlisted at Inverell in September 1916 when he was twenty two years old. He joined the 54th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement and left Australia on HMAT A29 Suevic in November. He became ill at Capetown after a route march through the town and was admitted to hospital. He died of encephalitis on 10 January 1917 and was buried at Woltemade Cemetery, Capetown, South Africa.
Private Edward McKenzie’s name is recorded on the Inverell Honor Roll and Cenotaph. In 1919 he was one of the men for whom a memorial tree was planted in Kurrajong Parade, Inverell.
John was a thirty nine year old married man when he enlisted at Inverell in March 1917. He became a Gunner with the Field Artillery Brigade, Reinforcement 31 and left Australia on HMAT A15 Port Sydney in November 1917. He served in France from March 1918 and returned home in June 1919.
He died in 1939. Gunner McKenzie’s name is inscribed on the Inverell Honor Roll.