Harold was born in 1897 at Port Albert, VIC to William George and Amelia Mary Watts. Harold had a brother, Herbert (KIA), who is also remembered in the Avenue.
Harold was a clerk with the Victorian Railways Audit Office when he enlisted in the AIF, 4th Reinforcements, 8th Field Artillery Brigade on the 9th of May 1916, aged just 19 - his parents permission having been granted. He embarked aboard the HMAT A30 Borda in October, disembarking at Plymouth, England in early January 1917.
In August 1917 Harold left for France and three days later transferred to the 3rd Divisional Ammunition Column and a further three days later transferred to the 7th Field Artillery Brigade and was appointed an Acting Bombardier. Harold was wounded in action on the 15th October 1917 during the First Battle for Passchendaele. He was admitted to the 6th General Hospital, Rouen, France a few days later suffering a gunshot wound and compound fracture to the right thigh - serious. A month later he was admitted to the 3rd Southern General Hospital, Oxford, England where his leg was amputated above the knee - at this time his father's address was
Millbank, Bacchus Marsh, VIC.
... has unfortunately had to have his leg amputated, he is going on well. He writes cheerfully, and says he does not "grouse" one bit, so his father must not. He will be fitted up with one of the new artificial limbs, which are scarcely discernible from the real ones.Source: The Bacchus Marsh Express, 27 December 1917
Harold was discharged from hospital to two weeks furlough in March 1918 and embarked from England in April aboard the HS Dunluce Castle and re-embarked from Suez, Egypt later that month aboard the HS Karoola. He was discharged from the AIF in August 1918.
Harold died in Parkville, VIC in 1976, aged 78.
He is listed on the Shire of Bacchus Marsh Roll of Honour.
Tree Position (accuracy ±1 tree) -37.68212232620122, 144.459327733319
Last updated by lee, Sat, 28 Aug 2021 15:25:30