Roy James Moorcroft O'Neill

First Name: 
Middle Name: 
James Moorcroft
Last Name: 
Alternate Spelling: 
Roy James Mooncroft O'Neill
Date of Birth: 
Saturday, November 30, 1895
Mother's Name: 
Emily Ann O'Neill (later Bradridge)
Father's Name: 
William John James O'Neill
Date Enlisted: 
Thursday, November 18, 1915
Rank at Enlistment: 
4th Battalion
British War Medal
Victory Medal

Roy James Moorcroft O’Neill was the son of William John James and Emily Ann O’Neill.

He enlisted as Roy O’Neill on 18 November 1915 at Liverpool Army Camp Casula NSW. He was 21 years and 1 month of age, formally a Tailors Presser. Roy (No. 5175) joined the 4th Battalion, A.I.F and embarked on 1 April 1916 aboard SS Makarini. According to his Casualty Form available on the National Australian Archives, Roy suffered bouts of sickness and injury during the years 1916 and 1917 including scabies, trench foot, rheumatism as well as a dislocated shoulder.

Roy was in and out of hospital during this time, re-joining his Battalion in between hospitalisation. On 4 October 1917 the Platoon had gained their objective in Broodseinde Ridge and were digging themselves in when Roy was hit in the body by a sniper resulting in serious wounds. He was carried out and died the next day, 5 October 1917. According to the Red Cross files (spelt as Roy James Mooncroft O'Neill), the informant was Sergeant G.A. Grant (4th A.I.F. D. Co X1V Platoon Australian Camp Rouelles). Private Roy James Moorcroft O'Neill is buried at the Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery in the Poperingewest-Vlaanderen area, Belgium.

Private O’Neill is honoured at Panel 41 Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour.

Family credits: Roy O’Neill was the brother of the late Mrs. Florence Gillis nee O’Neill and the late Mrs. Lillian Kennedy nee: O’Neill, and Uncle of Mrs Madeleine Smith Wollongong. Photos by Leonard Smith, Great Nephew of Roy. Content contributed by Kevin James Gillis, Great Nephew of Roy.

Sources: - No 7998473
War Graves Photographic Project 1248124.
UOW library photo S.S. Makarini April 1916. - History of the 4th Battalion Australian War Memorial.


Inscription reads: In loving memory of my dear son, his duty nobly done. R.I.P.
Arch entryway to Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery
Headstone of Roy O'Neill with singular red poppy


Roy is the brother of my grandfather Vivian O'Neill, Thank you to Leonard Smith and Kevin Gillis for sharing this information.

Thank you for your comment, Anne.

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I have a copy of the report by the Australian Red Cross Society, 1DRL/0428 which contains a statement by F. White (No. 5225), 4th Battalion, D Coy that Roy O'Neill "was sniped at Broodseinde Ridge on October 4th while in the front line". The Battle of Broodseinde Ridge took place in Belgium which seems to indicate he died in Belgium, not France. After being wounded he was taken by stretcher bearers to a Canadian Casualty Clearing Station where he died on 5 October 1917. Could this information be verified please? Roy was the younger brother of my paternal grandmother, Florence Gillis.

I am sorry, but the only information I have is that which I have acquired from this site, other than a small childs memory (my mother Thelma May O'Neill aged about 4 years) going to the docks in the early hours of the morning with her father Vivian to see off her uncle Roy.

Thank you for your comment, MAllen.

The links provided above, which include the Red Cross report you've cited, together verify your information.

I want to pay tribute to Roy's sister Miranda (Myra) O'Neill. She carried the photo of Roy everywhere she worked. It is a very large photo and she kept the photo in great condition.

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