Adolf Saarijarvi

AWM memorial panel 174

Adolf Saarijarvi
Queenslander Pictorial, supplement to The Queenslander, 30 September 1916, p. 26

Born 13.02.1877

Place Orivesi, Tampere, Finland

Ethnic origin Finnish

Religion Buried as Jewish

Father Adolf Saarijarvi

Mother Louisa Saarijarvi


Wife Anna Janne Saarijarvi (née Tuomisto), married 1918 in London

Arrived at Australia
from Norway
on 24.03.1902
per Serena
disembarked at Melbourne

Residence before enlistment South Gippsland, Chinchilla, Dalby, Qld

Occupation 1908 labourer, 1916 selector

service number 2709A
enlisted 29.03.1916
POE Toowoomba, Qld
unit 4th Pioneer Battalion
rank Private
place Western Front, 1917-1918
casualties WIA 1918
awards MM (16.07.1918)
final fate 28.10.1918 DOW and influenza in England
cemetery 1 Brookwood Military Cemetery, Surrey, Britain

Naturalisation 1909


Digitised naturalisation (NAA)

Digitised service records (NAA)

Digitised Embarkation roll entry (AWM)

Digitised recommendation for award (AWM)

Roll of Honour (AWM)

Blog article



From Russian Anzacs in Australian History:

Adolf Saarijarvi, a Finnish selector from Chinchilla, Queensland, was in a 4th Pioneer Battalion working-party in this battle [Villers-Bretonneux, 1918] and it was one of those occasions when pioneers had to take up their rifles and fight. Saarijarvi 'displayed great courage and presence of mind', his commanding officer wrote; 'he continuously placed himself in position from which effective fire could be made from his rifle and passed messages to Lieut Reid and those about him so that men in the vicinity could be used to the best advantage'. His actions on this day won Saarijarvi a Military Medal but he did not live to see victory: wounded in August 1918 in the advance on Amiens, he died from influenza in October 1918 in England, with his Finnish wife at his side -- they had married just a month before his death.