Arthur E. Eyckens

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Arthur Edmond Eyckens (1898-1917), one of three brothers who served in the AIF.



Eyckens was born in 1898 in Beaufort, Victoria. He was the third son of Leon Eyckens (born in Belgium) and Ellen Nora Wilson.[1]

Eyckens enlisted on July 1, 1915, in the A.I.F., C Company, 31st Battalion, SERN:6644.[2]

From the Riponshire Advocate, October 16, 1915:

"Private Arthur Eyckens, son of Mrs W. Eyckens, of Ballarat, (formerly of Beaufort), enlisted recently and has been in camp for some time. Mrs Eyckens has two other sons—Privates W. and L. Eyckens—at the front.[3]

He arrived in Suez on the "Wandilia" on December 7, 1916.[2] On June 23, 1916, he was sent to Marseilles.[2] On June 21, 1916, he was sounded in action, with gunshots to the left hip and right hand, and was sent to Manchester in England and admitted to the 2nd General Hospital.[2]

From the Riponshire Advocate, August 19, 1916:

"Mrs Eyckens, of Ballarat (formerly of Beaufort), has received information from the Defence Department that her son, Private A. Eyckens, has been wounded. Another brother, Private W. Eyckens, went right through the Gallipoli campaign and is still at the front, whilst a third member of the family, Private L. H. Eyckens, was wounded early in the Dardanelles fighting, and has since returned to Australia and been discharged."[4]

He returned to France on June 2, 1917. On July 13, 1917, he spent a week at the Army Pigeon School.[2] On July 21, 1917, he was treated in the field at the 25th General Hopsital with a gunshot wound to the head.[2] He was killed in action in Belgium on September 29, 1917, and was buried at W. Black Watch Corner, 1700 yards south west of Westhoeck.[2]

From the Riponshire Advocate, February 16, 1918:

"Mrs E. Eyckens, of 112 Little Lyons Street, Ballarat North, has received the following letter, dated 5/10/17, from Pte. A. J. Saph, of Beaufort, relative to the circumstances in which her son, Pte. Arthur Eyckens (a native of Beaufort), met his death in France some months ago:- It is with feelings of very deep regret that I have to write to you of the loss of your son Arthur, who was killed in action on 19th Sept., 1917. We had been together for some weeks, and were the best, of mates, and I can assure you I feel the loss very much. Most likely he had written home and told you that, I got him a good job with Major Tracy as batman. The major thought a lot of him and told me on more than one occasion that I had sent him a good man. On the morning of the 26th Sept. our battalion "went over the top and took and held their objectives. About 7 a.m. Arthur was with the major when this officer was wounded through the wrist. Arthur put him in a shell hole, bandaged his wound, and started to bring him out to the dressing station. On the way out a sniper picked them up, and the officer got another one through his other wrist. Arthur bandaged up this wound, got him back to the dressing-station and headquarters, and saw him off to the ambulance. The major thanked him ever so much, he told me, and promised to write to him as soon as he could, and sent him back from the line.

He had to return to the firing line again on the 29th with others, as everyone was called up. On the 29th, a few minutes before his party (the last of the company) were relieved, a shell lodged right in the corner of the trench killing a sergeant, two corporals, and seven others instantaneously, and burying two others. On the 1st October poor old Will (the late soldier's brother) came along to where we were, and I had to break the sad news to him. We went and picked out Arthur's pack, and Will got his belongings. Arthur had all his photos with him, and had shown them to me only a few hours before he was killed. He is buried along with the others, near where he fell, and the Q M. Sergt. is having a cross made and erected, as we are in the same parts again.[5]

From the Ballarat Courier, October 20, 1917:

EYCKENS.--Killed in action in France, Arthur Edmond, third son of the late L. W. and Mrs. Eyckens, of Lyons street north; aged 19 years - Though they tell us Wreaths of glory Evermore shall deck his brow It cannot soothe the anguish sweeping O'er our lives just now. -Inserted by his loving mother, brothers, and sisters.[6]


World War One service recognised on the Ballarat Avenue of Honour.

See also



  1. Federation Index Victoria 1889-1901, Births 1898 Ref. No. 24052, Macbeth Genealogical Services
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 National Archives of Australia, NAA: B2455, EYCKENS A E, accessed 14/12/2013
  3. 1915 'FOR THE EMPIRE.', Riponshire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), 16 October, p. 2, viewed 9 December, 2013,
  4. 1916 'FOR THE EMPIRE.', Riponshire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), 19 August, p. 3, viewed 9 December, 2013,
  5. 1918 'SOLDIERS' LETTERS.', Riponshire Advocate (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), 16 February, p. 3, viewed 9 December, 2013,
  6. 1917 'Family Notices.', The Ballarat Courier (Vic. : 1914 - 1918), 20 October, p. 2 Edition: DAILY., viewed 9 December, 2013,

Further Reading

External links

--Beth Kicinski 13:00, 19 August 2013 (EST)

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