Biography

Birth date: 19 March 1889
Birth place: Australia: Victoria, Elsternwick
Death date: 05 May 1986
Death place: Australia: New South Wales, Windsor
Final rank: Lieutenant Colonel
Service number: First World War, 1914-1918
V80044 - Second World War, 1939-1945
Unit: 8th Australian Infantry Battalion

Donovan Joynt (1889-1986) enlisted in Melbourne in May 1915. Posted to France as an officer, he was wounded in September 1916. In an attack at Herleville Wood on 23 August 1918, with his own company commander dead, and the leading battalion shaken and reduced by heavy losses, Joynt took charge. At one point he located the source of heavy machine-gun fire from a wood and led a bayonet attack on it. He continued to fight and provide vital leadership and inspiration until wounded by a shell.

After the war Joynt founded a printing and publishing company in Melbourne. He served again during the Second World War. A prominent veteran, he was aged 97 when he died.

Rolls and Awards

First World War Embarkation Roll

  • Rank: 2nd Lieutenant
  • Date of embarkation: 07 March 1916
  • Place of embarkation: Melbourne

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Victoria Cross

  • Unit: 8th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Victoria Cross

  • Unit: 8th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Honours and Awards : Victoria Cross

  • Unit: 8th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: First World War, 1914-1918

Collection Items

Photograph

044844

VICTORIA CROSS WINNERS FROM THE BOER WAR AND WORLD WAR 1 WHO GATHERED TO MARCH IN THE SYDNEY ANZAC DAY PARADE. BACK ROW LEFT TO RIGHT: LIEUTENANT (LIEUT.) J. ROGERS, SERGEANT (SGT) R. R. INWOOD, BRIGADIER A. S. BLACKBURN, SGT J. W. WHITTLE, SGT S. R. MCDOUGALL, MAJOR E. T. TOWNER, CAPTAIN (CAPT) A....

044844

044956

Sydney, NSW. 1938-04-23. A group portrait of Victoria Cross recipients who were invited to Sydney by the United Licensed Victuallers Association (ULVA) to march as a group in the 1938 Sydney Anzac Day march. This gesture by the ULVA was part of the Australian sesquicentennial (150 years)...

044956

A03534

Studio portrait of Lieutenant (Lieut) William Donovan Joynt VC, 8th Battalion. Lieut Joynt was awarded the Victoria Cross for 'most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty during the attack on Herlville Wood' on 23 August 1918, near Peronne, France. Lieut Joynt took charge of the company after...

A03534

A03534A

Cropped portrait of Lieutenant (Lieut) William Donovan Joynt VC, 8th Battalion. Lieut Joynt was awarded the Victoria Cross for 'most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty during the attack on Herlville Wood' on 23 August 1918, near Peronne, France. Lieut Joynt took charge of the company after...

A03534A

J03075

1927-04-25. AUSTRALIAN VICTORIA CROSS (VC) WINNERS WHO TOOK PART IN THE ANZAC DAY MARCH IN MELBOURNE, WAITING TO ENTER THE EXHIBITION BUILDING, WHERE A COMMEMORATION SERVICE WAS HELD. LEFT TO RIGHT: CAPTAIN R.C. GRIEVE, 2ND LIEUT W. RUTHVEN, CAPT J.E. NEWLAND, 2ND LIEUT J. HAMILTON, LIEUT. A....

J03075

J03076

MELBOURNE, AUS. 1927-04-25. AUSTRALIAN VICTORIA CROSS (VC) WINNERS WHO TOOK PART IN THE 1927 ANZAC DAY MARCH. IN THE BACKGROUND ARE THE KING'S AND REGIMENTAL COLOURS OF THE A.M.F. BATTALIONS AND REGIMENTS. LEFT TO RIGHT:- CORPORAL (CPL) B.S. GORDON MM, CPL T.L. AXFORD MM, CPL J. CARROLL, SERGEANT...

J03076

P02939.034

Studio portrait of Lieutenant (Lt) William Donovan Joynt VC, 8th Battalion. Lt Joynt was awarded the Victoria Cross for "most conspicuous bravery and devotion to duty during the attack on Herlville Wood" on 23 August 1918, near Peronne, France. Lt Joynt took charge of the company after the company...

P02939.034

WDJ161

The 8th Battalion on the afternoon of the 8th of May 1915 digging in at its new bivouac immediately before the receipt of the order to attack.

WDJ161

E00439

Sentries of the 8th Battalion in the western portion of the Hindenburg Line ('O.G.I.' looking east), captured in the fighting for Bullecourt. Identified is Lieutenant W D Joynt VC (standing right, closest to camera).

E00439

A05537

MELBOURNE, 1927-11. A FORMAL GROUP PHOTOGRAPH TAKEN AT THE VICTORIA CROSS REUNION DINNER. LEFT TO RIGHT: STANDING: MR W.D. JOYNT VC, SQUADRON LEADER F.H. MCNAMARA VC RAAF, MR J. ROGERS VC, LIEUTENANT G.M. INGRAM VC, MR W. PEELER VC, MR L.D. MCCARTHY VC, CROIX DE GUERRE, MR R.V. MOON VC; FRONT ROW:...

A05537

Film

Jacka VC

The life of the famous Australian war hero, Captain Albert Jacka, VC, MC and BAR, of the 14th Battalion AIF, who was the first Australian to win the Victoria Cross at Gallipoli. The film uses photographs and archival film interspersed with contemporary scenes of Wedderburn and his brother Bill...

F10234

Private Record

Sound

Lieutenant Colonel William Donovan Joynt VC, served with 8th Battalion, AIF, France during 1916-1918, interviewed by Roger Clarke

Lieutenant Colonel William Donovan Joynt VC, served with 8th Battalion, AIF, France during 1916-1918, interviewed by Roger Clarke at the RSL Veterans' Home in Frankston, VIC. A transcript of this recording may be available. For further information please contact the Sound section.

S04266

Timeline

Date of birth 1889-03-19
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs) 1915-05-21 Enlisted at Melbourne.
Date promoted 1915-12-24 Appointed to 2nd Lieutenant and posted to 8 Battalion.
Date of embarkation 1916-03-07
Date wounded 1916-09-30 Wounded during a successful night raid on enemy trenches and for his services was commended in Divisional Orders.
Date promoted 1916-12-31 Promoted to Lieutenant.
Date of recommendation honour or award 1918-09-01
Date promoted 1918-10-29 Promoted to Captain.
Other 1920-06-11 Appointment to AIF ended.
Date of death 1986-05-05