Historical information

Image depicts a group of 14 men who served with the 2/24 Battalion during World War 2 attending annual reunion in Wangaratta in November 2002. They include:- VX24987 Clifford GIERSCH DOB 16/12/1918 POB Culcairn; Bill WILLIAMS; VX15247 Alan MacFARLANE DOB 13/9/1908 POB England; VX43349 Leslie HANSEN DOB 26/1/1920 POB Coburg POW 5/1941; VX34601 Murray BURLES DOB 12/9/1919 POB Hobart; VX44006 Robert CLARK DOB 15/1/1920 POB Glenhuntly; VX34767 Thomas ANDERSON DOB 31/5/1914 POB Hamilton POW 5/1941 VX34505 James HUGHES DOB 28/5/1920 POB Castlemaine POW 5/1941; VX31279 Eric EDWARDS DOB 3/8/1916 POB Mordialloc POW 1/5/1941 VX29686 Gordon POIDEVIN DOB 30/3/1917 POB Corowa POW 3/5/1941; VX34760 Reginald GUNNING DOB 29/1/1919 POB Branxholme VX46233 Robert KEE DOB 10/11/1916 POB Sydney; VX45356 Douglas GRAY DOB 16/8/1918 POB Bendigo (Bugler) VX40320 Edgar SHILLING DOB 12/7/1918 POB England;


The 2/24th Battalion was an infantry battalion of the Australian Army, which served during World War II .A unit of all-volunteers, it was formed in July 1940 from primarily Victorian volunteers and was known as "Wangaratta's Own" because of the time the battalion spent in the town during its formative period prior to deployment overseas. It served in North Africa in 1941–1942 as part of the 26th Brigade, which was assigned to the 7th Division, before being reassigned to the 9th Division. In early 1943, the battalion returned to Australia and later took part in campaigns against the Japanese in New Guinea in 1943–1944 and Borneo in 1945, before being disbanded in 1946. The 2/24th suffered the highest number of casualties of any 2nd AIF infantry battalion. The Unit was granted the Freedom of the City by the Rural City of Wangaratta in 1990 and one of the first, if not the first, to receive this type of honour.

Physical description

Colour photograph of 14 men in two rows with Australian flag in background.