George Breitman

Alias Gersh; Breatman
Born 1896
Place Chechelnik, Podolia, Ukraine
Ethnic origin Jewish
Religion Jewish
Mother Udi Weksler
Arrived at Australia on ca 1914
Residence before enlistment Sydney
Occupation Labourer
Naturalisation Served as Russian subject

Service #1

Service number 4965
Enlisted 31.08.1915
Place of enlistment Holdsworthy, NSW
Unit 3rd Battalion
Rank Private
Place Western Front, 1916-1919
Casualties WIA 1917, 1918
Awards 13.04.17 awarded Military Medal for bravery in the field (LG 26.04.1917)
Final fate Died of pneumonia 19.04.1919, Andover, Hampshire, England
Cemetery 40 Willesden Jewish Cemetery, Middlesex, England


Digitised service records (NAA) (Breitman)

Digitised Embarkation roll entry (AWM)

Digitised recommendation for award (AWM) (Breatman)

Digitised Roll of Honour circular (AWM) (Breitman)

'Taking the votes of members of the 3rd Battalion on the second Conscription Referendum at Halinghen near Samer.' E01440 E01441 (AWM)

Blog articles

Russian Anzacs (Russian)

Russian Anzacs (English)

Anzac Diversity, educational resource (AWM)

Newspaper articles

Pte. G. Breitman. - Jewish Herald, Victoria, 13 June 1919, p. 12

From Russian Anzacs in Australian History:

George (Gersh) Breitman was [...] from the Ukraine, [...] he was Jewish and came from an area (Chechelnik in Podolia) where large Jewish communities still kept to their traditional way of life. In Australia he had worked as a labourer. Breitman 'showed himself fearless and quick to act' during the advance at Ligny on 2 March, 'by rushing out from his post to assist 2nd Lieut. Boileau who had attacked four Germans in the open', as his commander wrote. 'By his prompt action this man no doubt saved his officer's life and materially assisted in the capture of the four enemy.' Breitman was awarded the Military Medal for his bravery.

From Falling stars: The story of Anzacs from Ukraine:

The last Ukrainian-born Anzac to die as a casualty of war was George Breitman. In spite of being gassed in August 1918, he spent the winter of 1918-1919 in the harsh conditions of the former front line, where Australian soldiers were engaged in salvage operations, reburials of the fallen and similar tasks. Breitman developed pneumonia, was transported to an English hospital, but his gas-affected lungs failed: he died on 19 April 1919.