Walter Booth – Lay Reader

Walter Booth

Walter Booth was born in 1867 , the 4th son born to James and Sarah (Cutmore) Booth Of Edensor, Barraba NSW.  He was a tall man for his time at 5ft 11″.

Walter was a farmer and Lay Reader – a Lay Reader or Lay Preacher is a layperson authorized by a bishop in the Anglican Communion to read some parts of a service of worship. They are members of the congregation permitted to preach and preside at some services, but not called to full-time ministry. The office of Lay Reader has existed in its present form since 1866, and there are now around ten thousand lay readers in the Church of England today.

In July of 1916 Australia was at war and in the midst of the battles at The Western Front in Europe.

It is very likely that Walter on hearing of his younger brother Percy being wounded at the Battle of Fromelles decided that he should enlist to see if he could not only serve his country but go to his brothers aid.

Walter enlisted in the AIF – Australian Imperial Forces on 30th August 1916  Reg. No. 3017  Pte. and was a member of the 35th Battalion he was 29 and 5 months and 5ft 11 inches tall with his distinctive birthmark on his right shoulder , that was described as a looking like a bunch of grapes.

His overseas service began when he embarked on The A68 “Anchises”on the 24th January 1917 and almost upon arrival in England he was hospitalised with the mumps.

It wasnt until 21st March 1918 when Walter marched into the French fields of the Western Front with 35th Battalion. By August he was suffering from Diarrhoea and by early September was transferred to hospital in England.

Admitted to Hospital in Whaley England 11th September 1918 with Influenza and by November 11th the War was finally over.

Walter returned home on the HMAT  Berrima 17th Feb 1919

Walter, George, Percy Booth

Walter, George, Percy Booth

In 1924 Walter married Amy Caroline Bray. Amy was from Sydney her father was a Police Sergeant, Rowland C Bray.

In 1937  Walter was still farming in Barraba on a property called “Brayfield” with his wife Amy.  Eldest brother George James Booth was the local Butcher with his wife Mabel Frances (Gimber) and Stanley Roy Booth was at Edensor.

Walter Died in 1949 he was 61.

Walter is Carolyn Booth’s – Great Uncle

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