WILLSTEED, William Bennett
(Service number 8/2371)

First Rank Private Last Rank 2nd Lieutenant


Date 18 April 1892 Place of Birth Darfield, Canterbury

Enlistment Information

Date Age
Address at Enlistment 116 Church Street, Timaru
Occupation Clerk (NZ Railways)
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Single
Next of Kin William Ernest WILLSTEED (father), Darfield, Canterbury
Religion Church of England
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation (1) Samoan Advance Party; (2) 4th Reinforcements
Unit, Squadron, or Ship (1) Otago Infantry Battalion
Date (2) 17 April 1915
Transport (1) Moeraki or Monowai; (2) Willochra or Knight Templar or Waitomo
Embarked From Destination
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With Otago Infantry Regiment

Military Awards

Campaigns Australasian (Samoa); Egyptian; Balkan (Gallipoli); Egyptian Expeditionary Force; Western European
Service Medals 1914-1915 Star; British War Medal; Victory Medal
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations

Railways Employee


Date 10 November 1967 Age 75 years
Place of Death Christchurch
Memorial or Cemetery Waimairi Cemetery, Christchurch
Memorial Reference Block AN66, Plot 20
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

William Bennett Willsteed was the first-born of William Ernest and Elizabeth (née Smith) Willsteed; he had two younger sisters. He was born on 18 April 1892 at Darfield, Canterbury.

William Willsteed was a clerk with the railways, stationed at Timaru, when he enlisted on the outbreak of war and departed with the South Island Railway Contingent for the Front. “Warlike preparations have developed with somewhat startling suddenness during the past couple of days.” [Otago Daily Times, 11 August 1914.] Sergeant Willsteed was in the first of the volunteers to leave Timaru by train on 10 Aucgust 1914.

After returning from Samoa, Willsteed set out for the Front. In all he gave four years and 179 days of overseas service, seeing action in all theatres of war. In 1919 he married Elizabeth Louise Thomson. Elizabeth died in 1928, and in 1931, William married Beatrice Ellenor Greenfield.


Auckland War Memorial Museum Cenotaph Database [07 October 2020]; NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [08 October 2020]; Waimairi Cemetery records [08 October 2020]; Otago Daily Times, 11 August 1914, Timaru Herald, 11 August 1914 (Papers Past) [06 & 08 October 2020]

External Links

Related Documents

No documents available. 

Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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