Charles Andrew Ross

First Name: 
Charles
Middle Name: 
Andrew
Last Name: 
Ross
Mother's Name: 
Annie Ross
Father's Name: 
Alexander Ross
Date Enlisted: 
Sunday, August 16, 1914
Rank at Enlistment: 
Private
Rank at Discharge: 
Sergeant
Unit: 
20th Battalion
Company: 
B
Service: 
Infantry
Awards: 
D C M
1914/1915 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal
Place of Death: 
Victoria
Details: 

Charles Andrew Ross (Service No 647/659), was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1881.

On 24th October 1899, he enlisted with 2nd Battalion, B Company, 79th Regiment, the Queen's Own Cameron Highlanders, and served with them in South Africa in 1901 and 1902 during the Boer War. Charles was discharged on 19th November 1907, after serving 8 years. He made his way to Australia after discharge.

At enlistment, in Australia, he was single, 29 years old, worked as a fireman and lived in Helensburgh, N.S.W.

Charles embarked on HMAT A35 Berrima, on 19th August 1914, bound for Rabaul, Papua New Guinea, with  Australian Naval and Military Tropical Force, G Company. Charles served for 6 months until his discharge, on 4th March 1915.

Charles listed his mother Annie, in New Zealand, as his next of kin, and his address as care of, W. Kelly, of Helensburgh, N.S.W.

Charles enlisted in the AIF on 11th March 1915, and embarked on HMAT A35 Berrima, with 20th Battalion, B Company, on 25th June 1915. He arrived in Egypt, and was sent to Gallipoli, Turkey, on 16th September 1915.

The battalion was sent to Russells Top, where he was wounded in action, on 19th September 1915, during a bomb attack. Charles was evacuated to hospital for treatment to his arm. On 19th January 1916, he returned to the battalion in Egypt, and soon after went to France.

On 26th July 1916, Charles was wounded a second time at Pozieres, France. He was evacuated to hospital for treatment of a gun shot wound to his left leg. Charles spent some time in England, returning to his unit on 28th August 1917.

On 25th September 1917, Charles was promoted to Lance Corporal and on 1st October 1917, was promoted to Corporal.

On 20th October 1917, he was awarded the Distinguised Conduct Medal, for his actions at Menin Road on 20th September 1917.

On 12th August 1918, Charles was promoted to Sergeant. On 31st August 1918, he was wounded in action, a third time, while taking part in the Battle of Mont St Quentin. He was evacuated to hospital for treatment of a gun shot wound to his head. Charles was returned to Australia, in April 1919, and discharged.

After the war, he moved to Victoria. A number of letters were received from Charles, requesting replacement medals and discharge papers. He stated they went missing " whilst in detention at Mont Park Mental Hospital".

Charles was recommended for the Victoria Cross.

The citation reads, 'On 20th September during advance on ANZAC ridge an enemy MG was in action in our barrage and was holding up the advance and causing casualties. Pte Ross dashed into our barrage, silenced the gun with bombs and captured the crew. His action undoubtedly materially assisted the advance as otherwise, with a crew whose moral would allow them to fire a gun in our barrage, they would have caused a great deal of trouble and casualties after the barrage had passed'.

Source: Commonwealth Gazette No 95 - 27th June 1918

 

Charles was awarded the Distinguised Conduct Medal.

The citation reads,  'For conspicuous gallantry and devotion to duty. During the attack, while enemy machine guns were holding up the advance and causing casualties, he dashed forward, silencing the guns with bombs, and capturing the crews. His action materially assisted the advance, since, if these guns had not been put out of action, a great deal of trouble and many casualties would have been thereby caused after the barrage had lifted.'

Source: Commonwealth Gazette No. 95 - 27th June 1918

 

Charles died in Victoria, in 1944.

Sources: 
NAA: B2455, ROSS CHARLES ANDREW

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