Their bodies are buried in peace; but their names liveth for evermore.
Their Duty Done
A tribute to the men and women of the East Gippsland Region who Died as a result of their participation in World War One : 1914 -1919
2844 Lance-Corporal Gustave George ‘Gus’ Hosie - Bairnsdale / Bruthen  Killed in Action 19 July 1916
Local lads Russell William (known as Dick) and Gustave George (known as Gus) Hosie were born in Bairnsdale to Robert and Emily (nee Kreymborg) in 1887 and 1891 respectively. Dick worked as a tanner, possibly at Jackson’s tannery on the banks of the Mitchell River and was a valued member of the rowing club and had represented the club on numerous occasions. Gus was a butcher by trade and had been a member of the 13 th  Light Horse at Bairnsdale for twelve months before he enlisted. Dick was the first to enlist in January 1915 with the 60 th  Battalion and Gus six months later with the 5 th  Infantry before transferring to the 59 th  Battalion. They both ended up in Egypt at the same time and sailing on the Kinfauns Castle from Alexandria to Marseilles. Together they disembarked on 29 June 1916. No doubt they shared the same three day train trip to the front line before being involved in the first attack at Fromelles. They were separately both reported missing. In September news of many missing Bairnsdale boys was received in the town as family after family received the news that their son, or in some instances, sons, were missing. More than a dozen families were told the whereabouts of their boys was presently unknown, although it was in all probability they have been taken prisoner.    All news from the boys in the form of letters stopped. In June 1917 their father wrote to the authorities as he had heard nothing since they were reported missing in July 1916. He asked “are they killed, wounded or prisoners.    I’d like to know something to clear matters up as matters are (in my opinion) it is very unsatisfactory.” On 17 June 1917 their father received a letter stating that no further reports had been received of his sons since they were reported missing on 19 July 1916. He was assured that the overseas authorities were doing their utmost to clear up “these unsatisfactory cases” and that he would be informed as promptly as possible of any information coming to hand about his sons. The day before, on 16 June, a letter was drafted from the Red Cross to the A.I.F. in answer to their enquiries of Gust which reads in part “we regret to state that in spite of exhaustive enquiries for the past ten months we have been unable to learn any news whatever concerning his fate. As his name has never come through on the lists of Prisoners of War, you can therefore understand that we can only believe that he must have been killed. “  It was not until a court of enquiry was convened by the Commanding Officer, 60 th   Battalion held in the field, France on 4 August 1917 that Dick was determined to have been killed in action “in the field” on 19 July 1916. A similar court of enquiry held on by the Commanding Officer, 59 th  Battalion held on 29 August 1917 determined Gus had met the same fate.  Their deaths were acknowledged to the families separately. An account of Dick’s death reported that he was killed almost instantly by a shell. Hosie had just got over when a shell caught him. The ground was not held and it was impossible to bury him. Fire was too heavy. Hosie was a brave man who would not remain in the rear but pushed to the front. Neither of their bodies were recovered with both being buried in no man’s land. Such was the mayhem of Fromelles on 19 July 1916. The Hosie boys are remembered on several Honour rolls in the district including Wy Yung, the A.N.A., the Bairnsdale Shire, Mossiface and St Andrew’s Church.
….. brothers died in the same battle
1948 Private Russell William ‘Dick’ Hosie - Bairnsdale / Bruthen  Killed in Action 19 July 1916
The Hosie family including Gustave and Russell on the left.
Gustave Hosie, back left, with members of the 13th Light Horse most likely taken Bairnsdale.
The image of Russell ‘Dick’ Hosie from the Bairnsdale Advertiser 3 October 1917
Gustave ‘Gus’ Hosie taken at Heiliopolis, Egypt.