Walter Parker (ANZAC)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Walter Parker
Born (1894-08-11)11 August 1894
Sydney, New South Wales
Died 22 January 2000(2000-01-22) (aged 105)
Sydney, New South Wales
Allegiance Australia Australia
Service/branch Australian Army
Australian Imperial Force (AIF)
– 20th Battalion, 4th Reinforcements
Years of service 1915–1919
Battles/wars World War I
Battle of Gallipoli
Battle of Pozières
Awards 1914-15 Star
British War Medal
Victory Medal
80th Anniversary Armistice Remembrance Medal
Centenary Medal
Legion d'Honneur (France)

Walter Parker (11 August 1894 – 22 January 2000) was an Australian centenarian, one of the last three living veterans of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who served in World War I.[1]

ANZAC soldier[edit]

Parker's pre-war plans for a career in Sydney as a commercial art printer was set aside when he enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) at age 20. He arrived at the Battle of Gallipoli in November 1915 with the 20th Battalion, 4th Reinforcements. He was tasked with carrying ammunition and water through the trenches to the front. After his evacuation from Turkey, he fought in France. He was shot in the arm at Pozières; and then he was invalided to England.[1]

Civilian life[edit]

After returning to Australia, Parker married and had two children, a son and a daughter. His son was killed in World War II. He was survived by three grandchildren and two great-granddaughters.[1]

Australian legends[edit]

In 2000, Parker was recognized as one of the "Australian Legends". His name and photograph were part of an annual series of commemorative postage stamps issued by Australia Post since 1997. The stamps honour living Australians "who have made lifetime contributions to the development of Australia's national identity and character".[2] Parker did not live to fully enjoy this accolade, as he died the day after the stamp was officially issued.[3]

Parker's 45-cent Legend stamp displays the soldier's portrait as a young man, photographed just prior to his departure for Gallipoli. Formal photographs of the other two ANZAC centenarians complete this stamp set. In addition, a fourth stamp features the 1914-15 star medal which was presented to all those who fought in campaigns during those war years.[4] These stamps, designed by Cathleen Cram of the Australia Post Design Studio, commemorate the story of events and people shaping contemporary Australia.[5] The Parker stamp honours him as an individual and as a representative of all the soldiers at Gallipoli whose actions affected Australia's evolving self-image.[6]

Medals and honours[edit]

1914-15 Star ribbon.jpg BWM ribbon.jpg

Victory medal (UK) ribbon.png 80th Anniversary Armistice Remembrance Medal ribbon.png Centenary Medal (Australia) ribbon.png Legion Honneur Chevalier ribbon.svg

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e "Australia Day: Australian Legends," Stamp Bulletin (Australia Post), p. 3.
  2. ^ Australia Post: "Racing Legends are first past the post," 2007.
  3. ^ Goldstein, Richard. "Roy Longmore Dies; Australian 'Legend,' 107," New York Times. 2 July], 2001.
  4. ^ a b Australia Post: "Previous Australia Post Australian Legends," 2005.
  5. ^ "156 years collecting Australian graphic art," Priority (Australia Post), 2000.
  6. ^ Australia Post: "Stamp Bulletin Online No. 254: Australian Legends - The Last Anzacs," 21 January 2000.

External links[edit]