Biography

Birth date: 19 October 1902
Birth place: Australia: Western Australia, Katanning
Death date: 26 October 1942
Death place: North Africa: Western Desert, Western Desert (Egypt), El Alamein
Final rank: Private
Service number: WX10426 - Second World War, 1939-1945
Unit: 2/48th Australian Infantry Battalion

Percy Gratwick (1902-1942) was a 38-year-old former gold prospector from Western Australia. In an attack at Miteiriya Ridge, Gratwick's company suffered heavy casualties and was held up by intense enemy fire; his platoon lost its commander, its sergeant, and most of the men. Seeing the seriousness of the situation, Gratwick launched a single-handed attack with grenades, rifle, and bayonet on the German posts. He finally fell to a burst of machine-gun fire. His lone efforts had a big impact, inspiring all those around him and enabling the company to advance.

Rolls and Awards

Roll of Honour

  • Rank: Private
  • Date of Death: 26 October 1942
  • Unit: 2/48th Australian Infantry Battalion

Honours and Awards (Recommendation) : Victoria Cross

  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Honours and Awards : Victoria Cross

  • Unit: 2/48th Australian Infantry Battalion
  • Conflict: Second World War, 1939-1945

Collection Items

Photograph

100640

PRIVATE P.E. GRATWICK VC, 2/48TH INFANTRY BATTALION. HE WAS AWARDED THE VICTORIA CROSS POSTHUMOUSLY FOR ACTION AT MITEIRIYA RIDGE, WESTERN DESERT, ON 1942-10-25 TO 1942-10-26.

100640

Film

General Blamey in Western Australia

Coverage of General Blamey inspecting various units in Western Australia. Identified personnel: Lieutenant General Gordon Bennett, Mr George Gurney father and Mrs R Clunnes, sister of the late Private A S Gurney VC, Mrs Gratwick mother of the late Private Gratwick VC.

F01840

The Last Post Ceremony commemorating the service of (WX10426) Private Percival Eric Gratwick VC, 2/48th Battalion, 2nd AIF, Second World War

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...

PAFU2014/095.01

Private Record

Timeline

Date of birth 1902-10-19
Date of honour or award 1942-10-25 - 1942-10-26 Awarded the Victoria Cross for action at El Alamein, Egypt whilst serving with 2/48 Battalion, 26 Brigade, 9 Division as a Private.
Date of death 1942-10-26