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Military Service

Final Rank

Staff Sergeant

Service Number

1003
- First World War, 1914-1918

N74800
- Second World War, 1939-1945

Birth date: 1878-11-22

Birth place: United Kingdom: England, Northumberland, Hexham

Death date: 1978

Death place: Australia: New South Wales, Sydney

John Wesley Hetherington was born in Northumberland, England on 22 November 1878 to Thomas and Margaret Hetherington. Hetherington worked as an engineer tool maker in Sydney, Australia before enlisting in the Australian Imperial Force on 17 September 1914 as an armourer corporal. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Brigade and departed Australia for Egypt on 18 October 1914 aboard HMAT Suffolk. 

After training in Egypt, the battalion took part in the ANZAC landing on Gallipoli on 25 April 1915. Hetherington was wounded during the landing and spent four months in hospital in Malta. He re-joined the 2nd Battalion at Gallipoli, where they remained until the evacuation in December 1915. 

After returning to Egypt from Gallipoli in December 1915, the 2nd Battalion arrived at Marseilles, France on 28 March 1916. Since the Gallipoli landing the previous year, Hetherington had received numerous promotions and was an armourer sergeant by March 1916. From July through to September 1916, the 2nd Battalion was engaged in its first major battle in the Western Front, the battle of Pozières. Following the end of this battle, Hetherington went to England on leave before re-joining the battalion in France. From February to May 1917, Hetherington attended the Armoury School of Instruction and was promoted to the rank of regimental quartermaster sergeant(warrant officer class 2) on 25 May 1917. Throughout 1917 and 1918, the 2nd Battalion took part in operations against the German Army in the Somme Valley in France and Belgium . Hetherington returned to Australia aboard HT Devon in October 1918. Hetherington was discharged in January 1919.

John Wesley Hetherington enlisted again during the Second World War on 10 June 1940. He reduced his age by stating his year of birth was 1888. He was discharged on 2 February 1945 with the rank of staff sergeant. 

John Hetherington died in Sydney in 1978.