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
4787 Sergeant Clyde Leslie Sharrow - Bairnsdale  Killed in Action 4 October 1917
Born in 1892 at Colac, Clyde Leslie Sharrow was the only son of three children born to William and Celia Sharrow. The family moved to Bairnsdale son after and Clyde went to school at 754 with his sisters. On completing his education he trained as a carpenter and undertaker with his father who was an undertaker in Bairnsdale. He was a keen rifleman which stood him in good stead on his enlistment in August 1915 when he was promoted to a training Sergeant in camp. Originally enlisting as a single man he had his records changed when towards the end of 1915 he married Winifred Semmens from Toongabbie. In October 1915, he featured in a group photograph with fifteen other recruits from Bairnsdale under the heading of “Type of Bairnsdale Volunteers” depicting the strength of volunteers from the region. On 4 April 1916 he embarked overseas with the 12/21 st  Battalion on the Euripides and arrived in the Suez for training. They proceeded to Larkhill, England on 13 October for further training and where he took on an instructional role. He spent a fortnight in hospital sick before joining his platoon at Broodseide on 25 September. At 5.40am on 4 October he was in an advancing party at Westourte Ridge when a high explosive shell landed beside him killing him instantly. He was buried where he fell. When news of his death reached Bairnsdale the Advertiser published the following tribute: Perhaps the most popular young man who donned the khaki in Bairnsdale has made the supreme sacrifice on the battlefields of Flanders. We refer to Sergeant Clyde Leslie Sharrow, only son of Mr and Mrs W. Sharrow, two of our well- known and respected citizen. Notwithstanding that he was an only son, and practically his father’s right-hand man in his business, whilst he had only been recently married, Clyde felt that he should respond to the call of duty, and he forthwith offered his services to King and Country, which were accepted. That was almost two and a half years ago. Private Sharrow, as he was then, was of an ambitious turn of mind, and consequently he aimed at advancing in the army. He, therefore, set about studying, and later on was selected amongst others to take up a course at the Training School. The next thing of note heard of the soldier was that he was located at Lark Hill, Salisbury Plain, England, where he had been raised to the rank of sergeant, and had been placed in the important position of Musketry Instructor. In this capacity quite a number of men passed through his hands, including several Bairnsdale boys, all of whom speak in the highest terms concerning him. In all Sergeant Sharrow was at Lark Hill for about 12 months, whilst he was also stationed at another place and took a course of machine gun instruction. In June last Sergeant Sharrow proceeded to France, where, after some hard fighting, he contracted trench feet and had to proceed to hospital for a while. On recovering he again took his place in the firing line until he was killed by enemy fire. The late Sergeant Sharrow was 26 years of age, and was married shortly before leaving Australia to Miss Semmens, who is well known in Bairnsdale, where she was engaged on the teaching staff at the Bairnsdale State School. There is one child, a girl about ten months old. Mrs Sharrow, jun., is at present residing with her mother at Toongabbie, and much sympathy is felt for her and the little child. Sergeant Sharrow was held in high respect by all who knew him. He was a member of the M.U.I.O.O.F. [Lodge], the Bairnsdale Rowing Club, whilst he was also prominently associated with the K’Nute Club, and at different occasions took the leading role in local dramatic performances. By his death Bairnsdale has lost an estimable citizen, but his name will live for ever amongst the residents, particularly the younger people, with whom Clyde was one of their dearest chums. Eventually his personal effects including his wallet, leather card case, coin, photographs, scarf and two diaries were returned to Winifred in 1918. Clyde would never meet his daughter who was born in December 1916. Winifred named her Lesley Joan, after the father she would never know. In 1920 Winifred married returned serviceman Charles Arthur Bruckner who had been a saddler at Bairnsdale. He had survived Gallipoli but suffered health wise for the rest of his life. Charles and Winifred had another daughter, Valda - a sister for Lesley. He is remembered locally on the Shire of Bairnsdale Honour roll and in St John’s Church Warrior’s Chapel. He is also remembered at Colac and on the Menin Gate memorial.
….. by his death Bairnsdale has lost an estimable citizen