My great-grandfather, Cyril Denton Fethers (MC, DSO) served in the First World War, along with a number of male relatives.
Erle Finlayson Denton Fethers, of East Malvern, Victoria, received his first commission in the Victorian Scottish Regiment in 1906 as a Second Lieutenant. He was appointed Lieutenant in November 1907 and then promoted to Captain in January 1912. He was military adjutant from 1908 to 1910. He served with the 48th Infantry, Citizens’ Military Forces (CMF), until his enlistment on 25 August 1914. Captain Fethers embarked from Melbourne aboard HMAT Orvieto on 21 October 1914, with A Company, 5th Battalion. He was promoted to Major on 1 January 1915[, but] was killed in action on 25 April 1915 on the Gallipoli Peninsula, aged 27 years. His younger brother, 16471 James Keith Fethers enlisted in December 1917, and survived the war. Several other relations also served with the AIF, including: Captain Bernard Denton Fethers, Lieutenant Cyril Denton Fethers MC, Captain Geoffrey Ernest Fethers, 4779 Private George Vernon Fethers, Major Noel Denton Fethers, 2031 Private Raymond Denton Fethers, Lieutenant Colonel Wilfred Kent Fethers DSO and 2nd Lieutenant Percival George Fethers who was killed in action in France on 3 May 1917.
In the Second World War my grandfathers both served – one on the Home Front, and one overseas. Lewis Kenneth Hughes, known as Ken, served around Australia as a PT trainer. James Evan Williams served with RAF in the European and North American theatres.
My husband, James, has served as a peace-keeper in East Timor during 2002-03.
I was proud to stand with him today, and to remember the service of my relatives.
Lest We Forget.