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JAMES Ronald William

Service: Army – 2/23 Australian Infantry Battalion
Service number: VX38852
Locality on Enlistment: Hawthorn
Duration of Service: 23 Sep 1940 – 22 April 1941
Prisoner of War: No
Honours: None for display
Date and Place of Birth: 25 May 1912 Colac
Parents: William Robert JAMES and Alice Adeline SMITH
Occupation: Teacher
Date and Place of Death: 22 Apr 1941 Tobruk
Place of Burial: El Alamein, Matruh,  Egypt

NOTES: Embarking in November 1940 on the transport Strathmore at Port Melbourne, the 2/23rd arrived in Egypt in mid-December. The battalion’s parent brigade was reassigned from the 7th Division to the 9th in early 1941 and just after this, the 2/23rd was sent to Cyrenica, in Libya. A German–Italian offensive from the west, resulted in the withdrawal of British Commonwealth forces back to the vital port of Tobruk. Over the course of eight months starting from early April, the 2/23rd formed part of the garrison during the Siege of Tobruk, during which they took part in defensive actions and counter-attacks as they were moved around the perimeter; casualties were heavy, with over 200 personnel being killed, wounded or captured.