The Soldier's Details

First Name:
Robert William
Nick Name:
Regimental #:
‘B’ Company, 9 Platoon
Place of Birth:
Broome, Western Australia
Father's Name:
William Haldane
Mothers's Name:
Charlotte Esther Haldane (nee Hilliard)
Pre-war Occupation:
Presbyterian Cemetery, Botany Sydney, Section B, Grave 473, Age 22 years.
Cause of Death:
Place of Death:
Sydney Harbour, drowned after falling between ship and wharf.
Date of Death:

General Description

A court of inquiry was held at Sydney on board HMT “PA” (Aquitania) on 9.1.1942 inquiring into absence of WX8433 Pte. Haldane, following  receipt of a report that a member of the ship’s complement had fallen overboard. The court found that WX8433 Pte. Haldane. W. was a member of ‘B’ Company 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion A.l.F. and was absent from Company muster parade at 06.30 Hours on 9.1.1942 and was still absent. A search had been made of unit area but Pte. Haldane was not sighted on the ship. In view of the evidence of Pte. Grundy and Pte. Gossage had been taken. (Pte. Haldane had spoken to members of the Battalion and it was thought that Pte. Haldane did not appear to be in an intoxicated state). The court considered that the evidence submitted indicated a connection between the absence of Pte. Haldane and the reported disappearance overboard of a member of the ship’s complement. The Funeral service was conducted by Reverend G.W. McAlpine.



Bob Haldane
Bob Haldane


Robert Haldane - Darwin
Robert Haldane – Darwin


at back F Dorrington back row: J Gregory, L O'neil, E Teasdale, A Newel, R Hindle front: R Haldane, M Hunter, T James, F Hinds, D Parker
at back F Dorrington
back row: J Gregory, L O’neil, E Teasdale, A Newel, R Hindle
front: R Haldane, M Hunter, T James, F Hinds, D Parker.


Please read further about several men from 9 Platoon


HALDANE, Private, WILLIAM, WX8433, A.I.F. 2/4 M.G. Bn., Australian Infantry. 9 January 1942. Age 22.  (Bob was in fact a few months short of 19 years) Son of William and Charlotte Esther Haldane, of Marble Bar. Grave Ref. Presbyterian Plot. Sec. B. Grave 473.
Bob Haldane was buried at Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park, Matraville, Randwick.  NSW.


Robert William Haldane also known as Bobby ‘Dyson’ was the  son of William Haldane and Charlotte Hilliard of Broome who married in 1921.
Charlotte died aged 36 years following an illness and Myra Dyson who had already remarried to Ribe after the suicide death of her husband, fostered Bobby and possibly later, his sister Barbara Martha Haldane.
Myra Dyson is mother of ‘Strawb’ Archibald Henry Dyson WX7599 of Broome.


Robert Haldane’s father Bill served in WW1.  Service No. 1550 he was with 11th Battalion 1914-1918.
Bob was born Broome about 1923 to parents William (Bill) Haldane and Charlotte Esther (Lottie) Hilliard who married about 1921 Broome.
Lottie Haldane died in 1936 aged 36 years – Bob would have been about 13 years old.

Bob was taken in by Straw Dyson’s mother.

Below:  Lottie Haldane.



Bob’s Haldane Grandmother died 1908


Bob’s Hilliard Grandparents marriage Cossack, 1886





Henry Francis Hilliard – father to Bob Haldane’s mother Lottie, died Dutch East Indies in 1924.




Martha Hilliard, mother of Lottie and grandmother to Bob died  in 1944.





Below:  From West Australian 1935