Associated with 1285 Sergeant David Roberts, born 21 January 1897 in Redfern, NSW. Roberts was a serving cadet when he enlisted as a private in the Australian Imperial Force at Lithgow, NSW on 25 February 1915, aged 18. As an original member of D Company, 17 Infantry Battalion, Roberts embarked from Sydney on 12 May aboard HMAT Themistocles.
After three months training in Egypt the battalion landed at Gallipoli on 20 August and for most of its time on the peninsular was responsible for the defence of Quinn's Post, one of the most contested positions along the entire Anzac front. On 1 December Roberts was collecting snow for drinking water when a sniper shot him through the back of his right knee. He was evacuated to a hospital in Egypt and after his recovery rejoined his battalion shortly before its departure for France and the Western Front in March 1916.
Roberts' first major battle was at Pozieres between 25 July and 5 August. He would later see action in the battles of Bullecourt, Menin Road, Passchendaele and the Somme. On 8 October 1917, in preparation for the attack on Passchendaele Ridge, Roberts moved with his unit from Ypres to a place known as Railway Wood. A short time later the unit moved to the front line where at 5 am on 9 October they attacked the German troops.
During the attack Roberts captured a German machine gun post, taking the crew prisoners and making them carry the machine gun back to his line. For his actions on this day Roberts was awarded the Military Medal. Several days later he was wounded in the right arm by a shell and was evacuated to hospital in Britain, rejoining his battalion in Belgium in early January 1918.
On 8 August Roberts had a narrow escape during the capture of Framerville as he records in his diary 'Still advancing-My box respirator saved my life today. A bullet went through it and hit my chest and it stopped there'. The following day the village came under enemy artillery fire and Roberts was killed when a shell burst close to him. He was buried in a nearby orchard and a cross erected over his grave. His remains were later reburied at Heath Cemetery in Harbonnieres, France.