Royal Arsenal Woolwich
First World War, 1914-1918
Next of Kin Plaque : Sergeant C C Dedman, 5 Battalion, AIF
Bronze next of kin plaque showing on the obverse Britannia holding a laurel wreath, the British lion, dolphins, a spray of oak leaves and the words 'HE DIED FOR FREEDOM AND HONOUR' around the edge. Beneath the main figures the British lion defeats the German eagle. A raised rectangle above the lion's head bears the name 'CHARLES CURTIS DEDMAN'. A manufacturer's mark 'W' within a circle, for the Royal Woolwich Arsenal, is stamped into the reverse.
This next of kin plaque was sent to Mrs Elizabeth Dedman. It commemorates her son, Charles Curtis Dedman, a 27 year old printer from North Fitzroy in Melbourne, who enlisted in the AIF on 8 July 1915. He sailed as a private with 5 Battalion and after a period of training in Egypt joined the fighting on the Western Front. He was promoted lance corporal in November 1916 and temporary corporal in May 1918. In July of that year he was involved in a reconnaissance patrol between the towns of Merris and Meteren, opposite a place called le Waton. One of four men who ventured into non man’s land, Dedman discovered a previously unreported listening post. The patrol surprised the two Germans in the post and Dedman killed them when their cries alerted the enemy to the Australian’s presence. The party made it back to their trenches under heavy fire and Dedman later returned to retrieve further identification. These actions resulted in the award of the Military Medal. On 15 August Dedman was confirmed in the rank of corporal and promoted three days later to sergeant. On the 23 August he was wounded in action with a gun shot wound to the thigh. He was transferred to hospital in England and embarked for return to Australia aboard the Kanowna on 5 January 1919. He reached Australia in March and was admitted to No. 11 Australian General Hospital in Caulfield Melbourne. He died there from a haemorrhage and heart failure on 9 September.