Fallen Comrades


[The following information is derived from the Personnel File for Walter Ernest McNatty, held by Archives New Zealand.]

Walter Ernest McNatty was probably a close friend of Sandy's. Certainly they both came from Invercargill, and were both Anglicans.

McNatty's History Sheet records his occupation as "Warehouseman", last employed by J.R. Webb of Invercargill, and his last address as 64 East Road, Invercargill, which was the home of his parents, with Mr J. McNatty of that address listed as his next-of-kin. It gives his birth-date as 18 October 1895 in Invercargill. He was assigned the Regimental / Service number 3/167A.

His Attestation Form, dated 19 August 1914, confirms his birth-date, occupation and address. It also indicates he was a member of the "Mounted Ambulance, Invercargill". The accompanying physical examination records him as 19 years 10 months old, 5 foot 4 1/2 inches tall, weighing 132 lbs, with chest measurements of 31 to 35 1/2 inches. His hair, eyes, and complexion were all, apparently, "Brown". He was in all other regards "Normal" and so classed "Fit".

His service dated from 19 August 1914.

On 12 April 1915 he embarked for the Dardanelles. He was promoted Corporal at Anzac Cove 4 August 1915. He disembarked at Alexandria on 1 January 1916. He was then attached to No 1 NZ Field Abulance at Moascar on 13 February 1916. On 2 March 1916 he was detached to Wellington Infantry Regiment, and, with them, embarked at Alexandria for France on 6 April.

He rejoined No 1 Field Ambulance on 2 August 1916. He was then detached to 1 Battalion, Wellington Infantry Regiment for duty on 12 November 1916. He rejoined No 1 Field Ambulance on 21 February 1917.

On 28 March 1917 he relinguished appointment to temporary Lance-Sergeant. On 30 March he was attached to NZ Field Ambulance Base Depot, Etaples, and then detached to No 4 Field Ambulance in England where on 3 April he marched into Sling Camp (England) from France. He was there until he marched out on 29 May destined for France.

On 12 October 1917 he was wounded in action in the field. He was admitted and transferred to 3rd Australian Field Ambulance's No 2 Casualty Clearing Station. He died of his wounds at 6.40pm that day. His wounds are described as "Penetrating Skull wound". he was buried at St Sever Cemetery.

In 1921 & 1922, his mother was sent the Scroll & Plaque which his service entitled him to receive, in addition to the 1914-15 Star, the British War Medal, and the Victory Medal.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission record for: McHatty, Wather Ernest.

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission description of and location map for St Sever Cemetery.


Photos courtesy of The Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

See also Auckland Museum's Online Cenotaph for more details.