Allan Gilbert Crerar
Serial No. 7215
Allan Gilbert Crerar - Information
Allan was born and raised in Dundee, Scotland. He later migrated to Australia with his family. They settled in Picton, where Allan helped to support the family as a labourer. When he was 21, he joined up on the 22nd of January 1917 in Picton. Commencing his training in Sydney and Liverpool, he was assigned to the 24th Reinforcements, 1st Battalion. He was then shipped out from Sydney on the 10th of February 1917 upon the RMS Osterley.
Allan disembarked in Plymouth in early April, and was marched out to the 1st Training Battalion in Durrington. A couple weeks later at Windmill Hill, he was transferred to the 62nd Battalion. His time in England did not go smoothly, brought up on numerous AWL charges in June and July. He was shipped to France in mid October, joining the 1st Battalion in the lines. At the time, the 1st Battalion were engaged in combat during the Third Battle of Ypres in Belgium. After struggling in the mud at Passchendaele, the troops would spend a very wet cold winter at the front. On the 21st of March 1918, German Command launched their Spring Offensive, a grand operation designed to crush the Allies before the bulk of US troops reached France. They managed to break through the lines. Bitter fighting developed, resulting in the Australian Corps being mustered as reinforcements. The 1st Division, therefore the 1st Battalion, were brought in to check the Germans at Hazebrouck. Here, Allan was wounded on the 17th of April when a shell explosion damaged his right arm. The 1st Field Ambulance rushed him to the 15th Casualty Clearing Station and then the 14th General Hospital. He recovered from his injury in England, and was taken back to France in July. He was then wounded again on the 23rd of August, hit in the foot. Once again evacuated to England for treatment, and was still in hospital when the war ended. The shrapnel to his foot caused his arch to drop, and walking became difficult and painful. He was sent back to Australia on the 25th of January 1919.