Percy Malkin, Bombardier 24419, 3rd Div. Ammunition Col. Australian Field Artillery
Died of influenza 22nd July 1919 in Caulfield, Melbourne, Australia, aged 29
Percy Malkin was born on 4 October and baptised on 24 November 1889 at St John’s Church, Macclesfield, the son of Harriet (nee Sherrard) and George Henry Malkin, a shoemaker of 3 Barton St, Macclesfield. In 1891 one-year-old Percy was living at that address with his parents and siblings George F (14), Sarah A (13), Gertrude (9), Charles (7) and Alice A (3). Ten years later the family was at the same address and included another child, Harry (9).
Percy was educated at St John’s Church School and Christ Church School.
Percy joined the local 7th Cheshire (Territorial) Regiment and served with them for two years before emigrating to Australia.
In 1913, Percy married Olive Vera Hooker in Victoria, Australia.
Percy joined the Australian Imperial Force on 10 March 1916 at Geelong, Victoria, Australia. His medical records show that he had a scar from an appendicitis operation. He stated that he was a farmer, but had previously been a motor chauffeur, and so was at first employed as a driver; it’s not clear when his rank changed to bombardier. Driver Malkin was drafted overseas in 1916, leaving Melbourne on 27 June and arriving at Southampton on 25 August. He then proceeded to France on 24 November 1916.
Driver Malkin was wounded on 18 September 1917 and was transferred to England on 25 September. After being treated at several hospitals, including spending 38 days in Reading War Hospital where a little finger was amputated, he was admitted to Macclesfield Infirmary (part of the 2nd Western General Hospital, Manchester) in December 1917 to be treated for wounds to the groin, knee and fingers. He remained there for just over two months, after which he was sent to another hospital – possibly Hurdsfield House – to convalesce and finally was allowed two weeks sick leave, most probably spent with his family in Macclesfield.
Percy Malkin was eventually discharged as medically unfit for further service, and returned to Australia from England on the Saxon on 11 December 1918, joining his wife at 109 Swanston St, Geelong. Percy was taken ill and died at No 11 Australian General Hospital, Caulfield, Melbourne, Australia of pneumonic influenza at 10pm on 22 July 1919. His wife was present at his death.
Bombardier Percy Malkin is buried in Grave Ref. C.E. 1211. in Geelong Western Public Cemetery, Victoria, Australia; the grave is marked by a family memorial. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission holds casualty details for Bombardier Percy Malkin, and he is listed on the Imperial War Museum’s Lives of the First World War website.
In Macclesfield, Bombardier Percy Malkin is commemorated on St John’s Church war memorial.
GRO (England & Wales) Index: Births
Cheshire Parish Baptism Registers (Find My Past): St John’s Church, Macclesfield
Census (England & Wales): 1891, 1901
Victoria, Australia Marriages (Find My Past)
WWI Australian Imperial Force Service Records (Discovering Anzacs website)
Commonwealth War Graves Commission website
Lives of the First World War website