SMITH, William James Tayler
(Service number 32585)
|First Rank||Private||Last Rank||Private|
|Date||15 March 1896||Place of Birth||Timaru|
|Date||26 July 1916||Age||20 yrs|
|Address at Enlistment||C/o G. B. Smith, Temuka|
|Previous Military Experience||2nd S. C. Regt. Senior Cadets|
|Next of Kin||G. B. SMITH (father), Temuka|
|Medical Information||Height 5 feet 8 inches. Weight 144 lbs. Chest 31-26 inches. Complexion dark. Eyes green. Hair black. Both eyes 6/6. Hearing, heart and lungs all normal. Limbs and chest well formed. Full movement of joints. Teeth good. No illnesses. Free from hernia, varicocele, varicose veins, haemorrhoids, inveterate or contagious skin disease. Good bodily and mental health. No slight defects. No fits.|
|Served with||NZ Armed Forces||Served in||Army|
|Body on Embarkation||New Zealand Expeditionary Force|
|Unit, Squadron, or Ship||20th Reinforcements Specialist Company, Machine-Gun Section|
|Date||2 January 1917|
|Embarked From||Wellington||Destination||London, England|
|Other Units Served With||WWII (Home Defence)|
|Last Unit Served With|
Award Circumstances and Date
Prisoner of War Information
|Date of Capture|
|Where Captured and by Whom|
|Actions Prior to Capture|
|PoW Serial Number|
|Date||28 March 1918||Reason||No longer physically fit for War Service on account of wounds received in Active Service.|
Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses
In November reported wounded (Casualty List No. 709).
|Date||27 February 1961||Age||64 yrs|
|Place of Death||Dunedin|
|Notices||Timaru Herald, 1 & 2 March 1961|
|Memorial or Cemetery||Temuka Cemetery|
|Memorial Reference||Services Section, Row 200, Plot 13|
|New Zealand Memorials|
William James Tayler SMITH was the third son of George Burnside and Mary SMITH, of Temuka, South Canterbury. He was a brother of George Joseph Enzie SMITH who died in WWI. Their eldest brother Charles Hay SMITH, was called up but not required to serve. At the time of enlistment, William was a farm labourer at Fairlie. He left for camp on 26 July 1916, part of a full quota of South Canterbury men. A civic farewell in the form of a luncheon in Stafford Tea Rooms and speeches at the Drill Shed was provided. He was also farewelled at an enthusiastic gathering in the Temuka Drill Hall. William returned to New Zealand in December 1917, on a hospital ship, with 546 others among whom there were 88 cot cases, two totally blind, ten mental cases, and numerous with artificial limbs. In March 1920 he drew Lot 3, of 932 acres, of the Golden Downs Estate which had been bought by the Government for soldier settlement. This was under renewable lease with right of purchase. On 19th May 1941, he was classified by a Medical Board sitting at Burnham as Grade IV permanently unfit for service. He suffered abdominal pain, flatulence and vomiting while in camp in 1941 and for about two years prior to this. William was of Waimate at the time of his death, and late of Cave.
Cenotaph Database [11 October 2013]; NZ Defence Force Personnel Records (Archives ref. AABK 18805 W5922 0107264) [24 April 2014]; TDC headstone image (Temuka Cemetery) [27 October 2013]; Timaru Herald, 3 June 1916, 25 July 1916, 26 July 1916, 7 November 1917, 31 December 1917, 1 April 1920 (Papers Past) [24 April 2014]; Timaru Herald, 1 & 2 March 1961 (Timaru District Library) [24 April 2014]
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