THOMAS, Frederick Walter

Frederick was the son of Walter and Mary Thomas of Westwood Farm, Gum Flat near Inverell.  His birth was registered at Inverell in 1898.  He attended Gum Flat School and was working as a Farm Hand when, at the age of eighteen, he enlisted at Inverell in August 1916.  As Frederick was under age, his father gave permission for him to serve overseas.

Frederick became a member of the 54th Battalion, 8th Reinforcement and sailed from Australia on HMAT A29 Suevic on 11 November 1916.  After a voyage of eighty days he arrived in England where he was transferred to the 14th Training Battalion.  In September this Battalion was sent to France and Frederick was transferred to the 54th Battalion until June 1918 when he joined the 14th Light Trench Mortar Battery. 

Private Frederick Thomas was Killed in Action on 27 August 1918 and buried at Lone Farm Cemetery near Harbonnieres, France.  His body was later re-buried at Heath Cemetery, Harbonnieres.  His personal effects including a prayer book, wallets, photos and fountain pen were returned to his mother. 

At Inverell Frederick’s name is recorded on the Cenotaph and Honor Roll and he was one of the 215 men for whom a memorial tree was planted in Kurrajong Parade in 1919.  His name is also on the Gum Flat Honor Roll.