John Oliver

Date of birth: 1894
Place of birth: Millbrook, Southampton
Service No.: 2374
Rank: Private
Regiment: Australian Infantry, AIF
Battalion: 43rd
Died: 4th October 1917 aged 23 years
Death location: Belgium


Life before the War
John was the third of 6 children born to parents John and Lucy.  His siblings – 2 sisters and 4 brothers – were:

Dorothy   b.1891

Lucy   b.1893

Louis   b.1898

William   b.1900

Charles   b.1905

In 1901 the family were living at 43 High Street, Shirley, Southampton.  John senior was a Tobacconist & Hairdresser, which was his own business.

By 1911 John senior had died and his wife was now running the business.  They had moved to 53 High Street, Shirley.  John junior was working in the Hairdresser’s Shop as an Assistant, along with a servant who lived with the family.


War Service
John served with the Australian Infantry, A.I.F., 43rd Battalion, as a Private, service number 2374.  On the 4th October 1917, age 23, he died.  He is Remembered with Honour at the Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorial, Belgium.


Ypres (Menin Gate) Memorialcenotaph-oliver-Albert-pict
Last Post is played at the Menin Gate Memorial, which was started in 1927 and has been played almost every night since except for a period in the Second World War when Ypres was occupied by German Forces.

Buglers of the local volunteer Fire Brigade arrive at 7.55 p.m. and stand ready at the eastern entrance of the Menin Gate Memorial.

The Buglers then step into the roadway under the memorial arch and make their way to stand in the centre of the Hall of Memory. The Buglers stand in a line across the eastern entrance facing towards the town.

At exactly 8pm (20:00 hours – 8 o’clock) Call to Attention by the Buglers. They sound the “Last Post” bugle call. This is followed by a minute’s silence. If this is not an extended ceremony (see below) the Buglers will then play “Réveille”. The Buglers will march off and the ceremony is ended. If it is an extended service Members of the Last Post Association will guide visiting individuals and groups who are laying wreaths when to do so.


Researcher: Becky Lonergan
Published: 9th June 1915
Updated: Insert dates here

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