5 February 2019
WORLD WAR VETERANS NOT FORGOTTEN
A number of unmarked graves of
First World War veterans who died after
returning from the war will be commemorated
under a two-year pilot program announced today
by the Federal Government.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs
Darren Chester made the announcement saying the
Unmarked Graves of the First World War
Program will provide funding to help
ex-service organisations, community groups and
individuals properly acknowledge veterans’
service at their place of rest.
“Australians owe all First
World War veterans an enormous debt of gratitude
and acknowledging their final resting place with
a marker recognising their service is a
demonstration of that respect,” Mr Chester said.
“While the number of unmarked graves of First
World War veterans is unknown, there are many
individuals and special interest groups who are
passionately committed to ensuring they are
identified and commemorated.
“This program is an important step in
ensuring every veteran who died after the First
World War Armistice is remembered for their
service and I would like to encourage
communities right across Australia who are aware
of unmarked graves to consider making an
An estimated 331,800 personnel deployed
during the First World War, of which over 60,000
were killed or are listed as missing in action.
This leaves approximately 271,800 service men
and women who returned to Australia at the
cessation of hostilities, of which approximately
137,000 were wounded.
“Sadly some of those who returned from the
Great War ended up estranged from their families
and may have struggled with day-to-day living,”
Mr Chester said.
“We know that many were buried in unmarked
graves across the nation.”
The program will be administered through the
Office of Australian War Graves which has the
responsibility for official commemoration of
eligible veterans who died during, or as a
result of war.
OAWG can be contacted via email
or on 1800 555 254.
Further information can be accessed on the
Department of Veterans’