Private Richard McDonald (SN 5182), joined the Australian Army in 1915 via the famous “South Coast Warratah March”. A quarryman as well as a member of the 37th Infantry Band at Kiama, Private McDonald enlisted at Liverpool with the 1st Australian Infantry Battalion on 20 December 1915.
Before he left Australia, the Kiama Salvation Army presented a bible to Private McDonald. Two weeks after arriving in Pozieres he was killed by a gunshot wound in July 1916, aged 33.
Private McDonald’s Australian Imperial Forces record shows he had no known next of kin, with his few belongings being sent to a friend of his, Miss A.M. Morrow of Dapto. She said of Private McDonald:
“He was absolutely without a living relative”
Miss Morrow died in 1949, also with no next of kin. The bible was then found in a box of secondhand books bought at Sydney’s Surrey Hills in 2006.
The bible was received on behalf of Kiama by the Mayor, Sandra McCarthy, at a small ceremony at Kiama Library on July 7 2011. 95 years after the death of the Aboriginal soldier.
Private McDonald is buried at Warloy-Baillon Communal Cemetry Extension in France.