George Henry Webster was born at St Kilda, Victoria, in 1896. He was employed as a warehouseman when he joined the Australian Imperial Force on 3 November 1916. He was just over 20 years of age, and his parents James and Alice Webster signed their consent for him to enlist under the age of 21.
Webster was attached to the Australian Army Medical Corps Hospital Ship Kanowna where he was employed with the rank of private as a ship’s orderly. He was one of the 144 crew members on the ship, which also accommodated over 450 patients and 88 nursing staff.
Kanowna transported the sick and wounded between Australia, New Zealand, England and Egypt throughout the war. During this time he participated in a concert held aboard Kanowna on 3 February 1917. He sang the popular song “A Perfect Day” and his name appeared on a program illustrated with the Red Cross flag.
George continued to serve on Kanowna until 6 October 1917 when, he was discharged back to Australia. In May 1918 he rejoined and embarked from Sydney, again on board No 2 Hospital Ship Kanowna, where he served for the remainder of the war until he was discharged on 8 April 1919 and returned to Australia on 17 September 1919.