Adapted from material supplied to the Longreach Leader for the Centenery celebrations of ANZAC Day, by Basil’s granddaughter, Mary Killeen.
He was assigned to G Company, 4th Battalion Australian Light Horse Brigade and departed for Egypt on 20 October 1914. On arrival he and some close friends transferred to the Infantry Division.
Before landing at Gallipoli the troops waited for about two weeks near Limnos Island in Murdos Bay in the Straights of the Dardanelles. On 24 June 1915 he was wounded in the left knee by shrapnel and on 30 June was admitted to hospital at Heliopolis.
In July 1915 he received special mention for acts of conspicuous gallantry or valuable service. He was posted to England and on 18 November was appointed to the rank of Lance Corporal. On 11 March 1916 he was transferred from 4th Battalion to 56th Battalion and promoted to Acting Sergeant Major and on 14 April was promoted to Battery Sergeant Major with the rank of Warrant Officer Class 2. On 5 May he transferred to 5th Division Artillery Column (D.A.C.) as Battery Major.
He left England on 20 June 1916 to join the British Expeditionary Force in Belgium and France. In November he was granted the temporary rank of Regimental Sergeant Major Warrant Officer Class 1 5th D.A.C. On 12 October he was mentioned in Dispatches from General Sir Douglas Haig for gallant and distinguished services in the Field (for action in France). This citation reads “This Warrant Officer throughout the period this unit has been in France has been most zealous in the carrying out of his duties. During the operation 19th/20th July 1916 at Petillon he remained without rest for three days and nights and showed a fine example of endurance. This Warrant Officer was wounded on Gallipoli peninsular on 24th June 1915 and “Mentioned in Despatches.”
On 1 December 1916 he was posted to 5th D.A.C. headquarters and on 2 January 1917 he was again mentioned in dispatches for “distinguished and gallant services and devotion to duty” by General Sir Douglas Haig, for actions in France. On 17 January 1917 he was appointed 2nd Lieutenant and posted to Field Artillery. Following that, on 24 January 1918 he was detached as Lieutenant to Reserve Brigade Australia in London but in October he returned to France and rejoined his unit. It would appear that this is when he was gassed and he had a six to eight week recuperation period. Some of time was spent in Wales with the Duke of Beaufort who was his cousin and also his God Father.
He returned to Australia aboard the H.M.A.T.”Derbyshire” and was discharged on 4 June 1919.
He married Dorothea Millicent Brabazon on 3 January 1922 at “Elderslie” Winton. She was the daughter of Charles Brabazon and Amy McMillan. She was born 3 January 1902 at “Maneroo” Longreach, and died 22 July 1973 in Brisbane.
Basil was managing “Walgra” near Cloncurry when their two sons Brab (Basil) and Peter were born.
It is believed that he then drew a selection called “Binyeah” but the drought and depression took their toll and the family was forced off the selection in 1929. During the time at “Binyeah” two of their three daughters were born: Victoria (Vicky) and Dorothea. He was cutting railway sleepers at Prairie, when their fifth and final child, Susan was born. Prior to this he conducted a stock and station agency at Prairie, before being forced out by debtors.
In 1931-32 he was a station hand on “Ashton” south of Prairie. In 1933 he worked on “Zara” south of Hughenden as drought and the depression were taking their toll on the rural industry. In 1935 he became manager of “Mt Sturgeon” near Hughenden. In 1939 he was appointed Pastoral Inspector for the Australian Pastoral (AP) Company at “Noondo” at Dirranbandi. In 1941 he took up the position of manager of “Cubby” station at Dirranbandi and in 1942 he became manager of “Dagworth.” In 1946 he moved to Townsville for some time. Basil’s last job was that of manager of “Oorindi Park.” He died at there on 18 November 1959.
“Lest We Forget”
Welcome to the Brabazon Blog! We are trying to get a forum going that would be more instantaneous and universal than either the family website (brabazonarchive.com) or separate emailing. We have commenced with a handful of topics - taken from the website - to kick-start conversations. Your suggestions for additional areas of interest and emails of a personal nature can be sent to Michael Brabazon at firstname.lastname@example.org
As we are probably all now aware, the Brabazon Clan is not homogenous but rather a mosaic of smaller genetic groupings, sometimes explicable by descent via a Brabazon female line, sometimes due to the adoption of the Brabazon name for various known or unknown reasons. By casting the discussion network as wide as possible perhaps we can begin to shed more light on each of the sub-lineages of the Clan - worldwide brainstorming, so to speak!
The Earl and Countess of Meath remain the standard bearers of the Brabazon name, and I think we would all agree that we have an excellent family at the very heart of the Brabazon Clan. Across the spectrum of our Family we are a good microcosm of Irishness in all its cultural forms and our cohesiveness in diversity is perhaps the best testimony to the greatness of our ancestors. So start blogging and let's see where it goes!