Biography

Birth date: 16 August 1891
Birth place: Australia: Queensland, Brisbane
Death date: 04 October 1971
Final rank: Private
Service number: 1804 - First World War, 1914-1918
Unit: 33rd Australian Infantry Battalion

Jack Carroll was born in Brisbane but grew up in Western Australia and worked around Kalgoorlie and nearby Karrawang. In 1916 he joined the AIF's 44th Battalion, but soon transferred to the 33rd. Messines was the battalion's first big action.

Over the period of 7-10 June, during the battle at St Yves (near Messines), Carroll was outstanding: he rushed an enemy trench and killed four Germans; assisted a soldier in distress and killed another German; attacked a machine-gun team, killing three men and capturing the gun; then extracted comrades buried in a shell hole while under heavy fire. His citation declared: "his magnificent example of gallantry and devotion to duty inspired all ranks in his battalion".

Carroll was a casual and happy-go-lucky man, known by his mates as "the wild Irishman". He was wounded a month later and again, severely this time, on 12 October 1917. Returned to Australia, he resumed work as a labourer and railwayman. In 1927 he had his foot amputated in a work accident.

Carroll was awarded the Victoria Cross, war service medals, and coronation medals for King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II.

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Rolls and Awards

  • Rank: Private
  • Date of embarkation: 09 August 1916
  • Place of embarkation: Fremantle
  • Unit: 33rd Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918
  • Recommended for: Victoria Cross
  • Unit: 33rd Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918
  • Awarded: Victoria Cross
  • Unit: 33rd Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Photograph

Timeline

Date of birth 1891-08-16
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 1916-04-27
Other units 1916-08 33rd Battalion.
Date of embarkation 1916-08-09 Embarked for Britain with reinforcements for the 44th Battalion.
Date of honour or award 1917-06-10 Awarded Victoria Cross, for action at St Yves, Belgium (Battle of Messines Ridge) whilst serving with 33 Battalion, 9 Brigade, 3 Division as a Private
Date wounded 1917-07
Date wounded 1917-10 Severely wounded in the second battle of Passchendaele.
Date returned to Australia 1918-08
Date of death 1971-10-04