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    William Ridd Bryce (1895 – 1917)

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Bill Bryces Medals

2 LH Colour Patch1895. Born in June ((circa) 1895 at Milton, New South Wales, William Ridd (Bill) Bryce was the son of William John Alexander Bryce, and his wife, Maud Bryce (née Kendall).

1915. By 1915 Bill Bryce and his parents were residing at Byron Bay, New South Wales from where in November that year he enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force. He was a Surveyor’s Assistant at the time, having trained under A.G. Cowdrey of Lismore, New South Wales for three years.

Bill BryceBill had previously served for three years in the cadets and at the time of his enlistment in the AIF had been serving for two years in the 4th (Northern Rivers Lancers) Australian Light Horse of the Citizen Forces – the equivalent of today’s Australian Army Reserve. He was posted upon his AIF enlistment to the 2nd Light Horse Regiment.

1916. Bill Bryce was promoted to Corporal and on 31st March embarked at Sydney on HMAT A16 Star of Victoria for overseas war service. He was taken on strength of the 2nd Light Horse Regiment then at Romani, Egypt on 14th June he reverted to the rank of Trooper. On 1st July, he transferred to the 1st Australian Light Horse Double Squadron at Serapeum, Egypt. The squadron was one of three such Australian dismounted units newly formed to participate in defence of the Suez Canal. At the same time, he was promoted to Temporary Sergeant.

As a result of the disbandment of the double squadrons, Bill Bryce transferred at Abbassia, Egypt to the 4th Australian Camel Regiment of the Imperial Camel Corps Brigade and reverted to Corporal.

1917. In April Bill again reverted to the rank of Trooper at his own request and the next day was posted at El Kubri Railhead, Egypt to the 17th Company, 4th ANZAC Battalion, Imperial Camel Brigade. In the following months, the battalion participated in a general advance north in Palestine.

On the night of 3/4 December 1917 Bill suffered multiple bomb (grenade) wounds while a member of a raiding party against Turkish trenches at 'Bald Hill' near Jaffa, now a suburb of the modern-day port city of Tel Aviv, Israel. He died of his wounds on 4th December aged 22.

Ramleh War Cemetery

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