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Home Aust Inf Bns 18th Battalion MENDELSOHN, Berrol Lazar

MENDELSOHN, Berrol Lazar


Lieut Berrol Lazar Mendelsohn

18th Battalion AIF

53rd Battalion AIF 

55th Battalion AIF

Killed in Action – 20th July 1916

Mosman Council

Son of Saul Mendelsohn and Abigail Mendelsohn née Rosensweig. His mother lived at ‘Ullenbar’, 67 Raglan Street, Mosman, at the time of his enlistment, and death.
Lieut. Berrol Mendelsohn, whose death in action occurred somewhere in France on July 20, was a native of Esk, 25 years of age, and second son of the late Mr. S. Mendelsohn, of Qneensland, and of Mrs. Mendelsohn, Ullenbar, 67 Raglan street, Mosman. He was attached to the Naval Brigade from a lad, and when compulsory training was inaugurated he obtained a commission in the 19th Infantry, in charge of the machine-gun section, and quickly mastered the details. He earned special commendation at Liverpool encampment, 1913, for the smart manner his men performed their work, taking less than half British Army standard time to bring their gun into and out of action. He was well known in swimming circles, having been a member of the Bondi Club for many years, and won many prizes, including the right to hold the Kelly Challenge Cup for a year. He left for Egypt as lieutenant in charge of reinforcements on July 28, 1915, and was immediately sent to Gallipoli, and stationed at Quinn’s Post, remaining at his   post until the evacuation. He was transferred to one of the newly-formed battalions training in the desert. He left for the battlefields of France, where his first engagement has proved his last. He joined the Pardrian Rubber Co. shortly alter leaving school, and remained with the firm for nine years, until be enlisted.   Lieutenant Mendelsohn’s youngest brother, Oscar, left recently with artillery for the Front.
– The Queenslander, Saturday 2 September 1916

Killed overnight in the German trenches, Battle of Fromelles.
Buried in the mass grave established by the German Army for Australian and British dead at Pheasant Wood, his identity disc returned to the British War Office.  One of the men positively identified when the mass grave was found in 2007, and interred 2010 in the newly built Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery.


National Archives – Service Record

Australian  War Graves

Further Reading – 55th Battalion

Picture Source – Mosman Council

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3 Comments  comments 

3 Responses

  1. Tim Cook

    Hi Glenn,

    Last month my book, Snowy to the Somme, was published, telling the story of the 55th Battalion. This was the unit in which Berrol Mendelsohn was serving at the time of his death. I have provided some details of his service at Fromelles in the book and the circumstances of his death. Regards, Tim Cook.

  2. Mal Johnston

    Hi Tim,
    My great grandfather Frank Johnston #3098 (55th)fought alongside Berrol on the night he died. He provided a witness statement regarding Berrol’s death. Frank was also shot through the lung during that battle and almost died. In fact he would have also been shot thru the heart and killed had the bullet not been stopped by a small bible in his breast pocket which our family still has. From Frank’s statement it indicates he had a lot of respect for Berrol. I will purchase your book.
    Regards, Mal Johnston

  3. Karen Rose

    My 3rd cousin William Henry Christian Rose 1087 was killed on 20th July at Fromelles and was part of the rearguard action by the 55th Battalion. He was buried in one of the German war graves and I have been involved in finding the closest y donor to positively identify his remains. This was Warwick Rose and he and his wife Selena attended the dedication on the 19th July this year. Tim I was wondering if there is anything in your book about him

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