The Soldier's Details
- First Name:
- Harold Alexander
- Regimental #:
- Headquarters Company
- Place of Birth:
- Greenbushes, Western Australia
- Father's Name:
- John Walker
- Mothers's Name:
- Ivy Alice Walker (nee Hancock)
- Pre-war Occupation:
- Kranji War Cemetery, Plot 1, Row A, Grave 7. Aged 23
- Cause of Death:
- Killed in Action
- Place of Death:
- Reformatory Road, Ulu Pandan
- Date of Death:
Harold Walker enlisted AIF 30 Oct 1940 and later joined Headquarters Company as a Signaller.
Harold was KIA Reformatory Road, Ulu Pandan on 12 Feb 1942 aged 23 years. Please read further
Above: Left Harold working as a baker,
Denmark. Chopping wood for ovens – rising very early every day to prepare for baking.
Above: A young Harold Walker.
Above photo taken of Harold and only brother, young John Walker.
Of those men from Denmark listed above, those who were with 2/4th did not return. Harry Tysoe died illness Japan Nov 1943 and Tim Hodgson died of illness Thai-Buma Railway Sep 1943.
Dedicated by His Family on 19 August 2017
Biography presented during plaque dedication:
‘Private Harold Alexander Walker of 2/4 Machine Gun Battalion was born in June 1918 in Greenbushes, Western Australia.
His parents were John and Ivy Walker and he had four sisters and one brother. He went to school in Mullalyup and later to Denmark state school.
After leaving school he was apprenticed to Mr Wood’s Bakery as a Baker. He arose at three am to stoke fires for bread making and then to deliver bread around town by horse and cart.
After finishing his apprenticeship in 1940, he enlisted in the second Australian Imperial Force.
He was posted to 2/4 Machine Gun Battalion and trained with them in Northam. The unit then continued training at Woodside in South Australia.
The battalion was listed as one of the support units for 8 Division, and as more of the division was deployed ‘up north’, by October, it was in Darwin with 23 Brigade.
The unit left Darwin in December 1941 intended for Singapore via Port Moresby. As a consequence of enemy attacks at Rabaul, the convoy then went to Sydney and Fremantle, eventually reaching Singapore at the end of January 1942.
The Battalion was utilised preparing defences around Singapore and was deployed to defend the ese attack which commenced on 8 February.
The machine-gunners suffered heavily, between 8 and 15 February. The battalion had 137 men killed or missing.
Private Harold Alexander Walker, service number WX9224, was killed in action at Singapore on 12 February 1942. He was 23 years of age.
He is interred at Kranji Cemetery Singapore.
His plaque is placed alongside that of Private Frederick Ludge from the same battalion, who died the day before him.’
Harold’s father John Walker sailed 24 May 1911 from London on ‘Armadale’ to Fremantle. Born in Northern Ireland in 1887 he was from a large family and his occupation was recorded as farmhand. His older brother Alexander died in France WW1. John named his son Harold Alexander after his brother.
Harold’s mother Ivy Alice Hancock, born Wiltshire in 1897, was one of four children who sailed with her parents from London 22 July 1911 on ‘Ophir’ to Fremantle.
John Walker and Ivy Hancock married 1916 Balingup. In 1919 John commenced working with WAGR first working at Kirup then Mullalyup and finally Denmark. He retired in 1949.
John and Ivy had three daughters and two sons, Eileen, Harold, Mavis, Elizabeth and John.
When Harold finished school at Denmark, he got a position as an apprentice with the local Denmark bakery and remained working there until he enlisted in 1940. The hours were long, requiring him to be up very early to have the ovens working (wood fired of course).
In Feb 1943, Harold’s grandfather died at Margaret River. We do not know when the Walker family were informed of Harold’s death in Singapore.
Harold’s mother Ivy died 15 November 1966 aged 69 years, and his father John died 5 August 1968 aged 81 years. Both buried at Denmark Cemetery.