REL30869.006
ID number REL30869.006
Title Gallipoli Star : A W Campbell
Collection Heraldry
Object type Medal
Makers
  • A J Parkes & Co (Maker)
  • Smith, Ross E (Maker)
Place made Australia
Date made 1990
Physical description
  • Brass with 'antique bronze' finish
  • Silver with 'antique' finish

Description

Gallipoli Star. Unnamed as issued.

Summary

This medal was presented to Alec Campbell by Mr Ross Smith at Lady Davidson Hospital on 22 April 1990, just before the departure of the 75th Anniversary Anzac Day pilgrimage of veterans to Gallipoli. At his own expense, Mr Smith had the Gallipoli Star manufactured from the original designs, which were not then approved for issue, to present to surviving Australian and New Zealand Anzac veterans. Alec William Campbell was born in Launceston, Tasmania, in 1899. Aged 16, he enlisted in the AIF in July 1915, claiming to be an 18 year old clerk, and despite his small size and obvious youth, sailed on the 'Kyarra' in August 1915 as No 2731 with the 8th Reinforcements to 15 Infantry Battalion. Landing at Gallipoli on 2 November, Campbell served as a water carrier for the remainder of the campaign at Anzac. While at Gallipoli, he suffered from a bout of influenza, and was also injured when accidentally struck in the face by a comrade's rifle. He, and the rest of the battalion, were evacuated from the peninsula as part of the general withdrawal on 13 December. On 1 January 1916, he was admitted to 2 Australian General Hospital in Egypt, and over the next six months suffered from jaundice, mumps and Bells Palsy, a form of facial paralysis caused by the facial injury he had suffered at Anzac. Although occasionally allowed to return to his unit, Campbell's health during this period was never good, and he was eventually repatriated to Australia medically unfit in June 1916, aboard the A.15 'Port Sydney', and discharged from the Army. After the war, Campbell worked in the construction of railway carriages and houses, before joining the Public Service, where he eventually became a research economist. The Bells Palsy which developed as a result of his Gallipoli injury eventually caused the loss of his right eye. When Roy Longmore died in June 2001, Alec Campbell was left as the only surviving Australian veteran of the Gallipoli campaign. He died on 16 May 2002 in Hobart.