Reginald Arthur Hunter
Service No.3784, Private, 59th Battalion

59th Battalion: Wikipedia

The son of Robert and Esther Maria Hunter of Bairnsdale, Reg, a twenty year old salesman, enlisted on 2 August 1915. Having completed basic training, he embarked for Egypt with the 7th Battalion 12th Reinforcement on HMAT Ceramic on 23 November that year.
Following further training in Egypt, Reg was allotted to the newly formed 59th Battalion, which embarked for Marseilles aboard the Kinfauns Castle on 18 June 1916, on its way to the Western Front.
Within weeks of arriving in France, on 19 July 1916 the 59th Battalion was in the first assault at the Battle of Fromelles. The German position had the advantage of a slight rise, and before the 59th had gone thirty metres they were mown down by intense machine gun fire, trapping the surviving Australians in no-man’s land.
The 59th Battalion suffered 695 casualties. Reg was reported ‘missing’ and later ‘presumed buried in no-man’s land’ as he had not been seen since going over the parapet. The finding at a court of enquiry, convened in the field on 29 August 1917, was that Private Hunter was killed in action on 19 July 1916.

With no known grave, Reginald Hunter’s name is commemorated on the Menin Gate at Ypres and on the honour roll at Bairnsdale’s 754 Primary School.