The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (6964) Private Patrick Condon, 13th Battalion, AIF, First World War.

Place Europe: Belgium, Flanders, West-Vlaanderen, Ypres
Accession Number AWM2016.2.198
Collection type Film
Object type Last Post film
Physical description 16:9
Maker Australian War Memorial
Place made Australia: Australian Capital Territory, Canberra, Campbell
Date made 16 July 2016
Access Open
Conflict First World War, 1914-1918
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Copying Provisions Copyright restrictions apply. Only personal, non-commercial, research and study use permitted. Permission of copyright holder required for any commercial use and/or reproduction.

The Last Post Ceremony is presented in the Commemorative area of the Australian War Memorial each day. The ceremony commemorates more than 102,000 Australians who have given their lives in war and other operations and whose names are recorded on the Roll of Honour. At each ceremony the story behind one of the names on the Roll of Honour is told. Hosted by Jana Johnson, the story for this day was on (6964) Private Patrick Condon, 13th Battalion, AIF, First World War.

Film order form
Speech transcript

6964 Private Patrick Condon, 13th Battalion, AIF
KIA 24 September 1917
No photograph in collection

Story delivered 16 July 2016

Today we remember and pay tribute to Private Patrick Condon, who was killed fighting in Belgium in the First World War.

Patrick Condon was born in 1885, one of six children of Patrick and Margaret Condon of Wollongong, New South Wales. He attended St Joseph’s Convent School in Albion Park and was an accomplished musician, playing the organ for the Children’s Mass. After completing his schooling he was awarded the Good Conduct Medal for his services to the parish. He later worked as a landscape gardener, and for a number of years lived and worked in nearby Jamberoo. He had, according to those who knew him, “a quiet and happy disposition which won for him the respect of all with whom he became associated”.

Condon enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force, aged 30, at the military camp at Kiama in October 1916. He spent several weeks undergoing basic training before leaving Australia with a reinforcement group for the 13th Battalion, bound for the training camps in England. Training throughout the following winter on the Salisbury Plains, it was not until May 1917 that Condon finally embarked for the fighting on the Western Front.

By this stage of the war the focus of British operations had shifted north to Belgium in an effort to break out of the Ypres Salient and sweep through to the German submarine bases on the Belgian coast. No sooner had Condon joined his battalion in France than he was transported to Belgium for what would become known as the Third Battle of Ypres.

Australia’s introduction to the offensive took place on 20 September 1917 in a successful attack made by two infantry divisions. The 13th Battalion took over parts of the newly captured positions in preparation for the next step of the advance towards Passchendaele. German artillery shelled the Australian lines relentlessly throughout the day as more men and materiel were brought up to consolidate the newly won ground.

Private Condon died on 24 September. It is believed he was killed by German artillery fire, but his body was never recovered from the Menin Road battlefield. As such, he is among the more than 6,000 Australians with no known grave whose names appear on the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing at Ypres.

Private Condon’s name is also listed on the Roll of Honour on my right, among more than 60,000 others from the First World War.

This is just one of the many stories of service and sacrifice told here at the Australian War Memorial. We now remember Private Patrick Condon, who gave his life for us, for our freedoms, and in the hope of a better world.

Aaron Pegram
Historian, Military History Section

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