John was the seventh known child of Angus and Mary McAulay of Chatsworth, NSW. He was a keen sportsman, with an interest in athletics and rowing. He became a school teacher and was in charge at Bonshaw Public School prior to enlisting at Warwick, Qld, in April 1916. He had previously served three years with Cadets and six months with the Citizens Force.
A single man, aged twenty, he joined the Machine Gun Company 13, Reinforcement 5, and sailed from Australia with this unit on the ship HMAT A73 Commonwealth in September 1916. After arriving in England in November, he became ill and was hospitalised with mumps for two weeks. Three months later he was sent to France where after just a month he was Killed in Action on 19 April 1917. John has no known grave and his name is recorded on the Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France. John’s personal effects – a Testament and wallet – were returned to his Mother.
John’s name is inscribed on the Chatsworth Cenotaph and on the Bonshaw Honor Roll.
Image: Courtesy AWM # PO6085.002