Walter was born at Drouin, VIC in 1882 to Charles Scott Harkness and Margaret Anderson. His grandmother was Mrs W Anderson(3) of Bacchus Marsh and his uncle was W S Harkness JP(3).
Walter was a farmer and gave his address as Drouin, VIC when he enlisted at Warragul in the AIF, 16th Reinforcements, 24th Battalion on the 30th of March 1916, aged 34 - he had previously served in the Victorian Rangers for three years. Walter embarked aboard the HMAT A71 Nestor in October, disembarking at Plymouth, England in November.
A few weeks after arriving in England, Walter spent a few days in Fargo Military Hospital suffering from bronchitis or pleurisy. In mid April 1917 he proceeded overseas to France, joining the 24th Battalion in early May. Walter was declared permanently unfit and proceeded to the 2nd Australian Divisional Base Depot in late September. In late December, Walter transferred to the Australian Veterinary Hospital in Calais, France and was promoted to Lance Corporal in June 1918. Walter had two weeks leave in England in August before transferring to the 5th Australian Mobile Veterinary Section in November - two weeks earlier he had reverted to Private at his own request. In late January 1919 he was promoted to Temporary Sergeant and detached for duty with the Small Arms Ammunition Section, 5th Divisional Ammunition Column.
In March 1919 Walter was granted leave in Paris before proceeding to Base for repatriation, embarking from England in July aboard the Chemnitz and returning to Australia in September. He was discharged from the AIF in October 1919. In 1933 Walter was living in Drouin, VIC.
Walter died at Heidelberg, VIC in 1961, aged 79.
He is listed on the Bacchus Marsh & District Roll of Honour.
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Last updated by lee, Sat, 28 Aug 2021 15:37:38