Bepper, Rossoggsky, Upmal, Adolfsson, Talava

February 27, 2016

John Ludwig Bepper

  • John Ludwig Bepper from Riga came to Australia in 1913 and was a bush worker in Moonan Flat, NSW.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front. In March 1917, at Armentieres, he was wounded in the left arm, and in October 1917, at Passchendaele, in the right hand.
  • While in England after the war he did a course in painting and decorating and married an English girl, Maud Hardman; they sailed to Australia together. They lived in Sydney where John worked as a painter and decorator. In 1939, when the new world war was approaching, he committed suicide; not long before that he told his wife ‘that if people knew what the soldiers had gone through there would never be another war’.

Ivan Rossoggsky

  • Ivan Rossoggsky (his correct surname was most likely Rossovsky), a Ukrainian seaman from Bendery, worked in Moonan Flat with Bepper and they enlisted together.
  • He served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front, attaining the rank of sergeant. In June 1917, at Wimereux, he was wounded in the shoulder and thigh, but rejoined a month later and was killed in a week, in July 1917, at Messines.
  • His family in Ukraine was never found, but his name was commemorated on the Moonan Flat and Scone WWI memorials.

Ernest Upmal

  • Ernest Upmal, a Latvian seaman from Riga, enlisted in the AIF in Sydney.
  • He served with the 56th Battalion on the Western Front and was killed in December 1916 at the Somme.
  • His family in Latvia was never found.

Adolf Sven Adolfsson

  • Adolf Sven Adolfsson, a seaman from Kråkö in Finland, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 24th Battalion on the Western Front, attaining the rank of Lance Corporal. He was awarded the Military Medal for his gallantry at Daisy Wood in October 1917, where he fought as a machine-gunner. In March 1918 he was gassed at Ploegsteert, but recovering in England, he returned to the front and gained a bar to his Military Medal at Peronne in September 1918, this time for stretcher-bearing.
  • After the war he was sailing for several years, and then returned to his native Kråkö in Finland. His war service in the AIF is commemorated in the local Parvoo Museum in Finland.

Ansselmi Talava

  • Ansselmi Talava, a Finnish seaman, at the time of enlistment in the AIF lived in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 6th Battalion on the Western Front. In October 1917 he was buried by a shell explosion and experienced shell shock. Recovering, he returned to his battalion and was killed in August 1918 near St Martyns Wood.
  • His family in Finland was never found.