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 Christina and Donald McLEAN from Scotland 1837

Colin Donald Sydney MCLEAN, Pte

Colin Donald Sydney MCLEAN, Pte

Male 1895 - 1918  (22 years)

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  • Name Colin Donald Sydney MCLEAN  [1
    Suffix Pte 
    Born 13 Oct 1895  Kiata Vic Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Gender Male 
    Biography Notes * Colin Donald Sydney McLean was the 3rd son and 5th child of Donald Henry and Ellen Joanna McLEAN, born 13/10/1895
    * On the outbreak of World War I, he was unmarried and enlisted in the 1st A.l.F.
    * After seven week's training at Mitcham Camp, followed by four weeks training in England, Private McLean joined the 32nd Battalion with the 9th reinforcements. He served with them for 12 months and was transferred to the 50th Battalion after his elder brother, James, joined it.
    * He was a great athlete, and being a distance runner, he was for a time engaged in running dispatches from front lines to Battalion headquarters.
    * The principal battles he was engaged in were The Somme, Bullecourt, Pollegyn Wood and Passchendale.
    * While in England, Private McLean had the honour to perform before the King, and his photo, amongst a group of athletes, appeared in the Adelaide "Chronicle".
    * He was presented with a medal by King George.
    * He was running a dispatch when he met his death in France at Brae on 13/8/1918.
    * James was in close proximity when he was killed outright.
    * A memorial service was held in the Pinnaroo Presbyterian Church on September 29th, 1918 for Private Colin McLean and Corporal Chas, T. Routley, both of Murrayville
    * Obituary: Summarised from a newspaper clipping dated 4/10/1918.

    Biography Notes Colin's father, Donald McLean, was interviewed for an article in 'The Register', 26th May 1923, page 15.
    Mr McLean told a pathetic story concerning his youngest son, who insisted upon going to the war before he was 21 years of age. He was a born athlete, and was engaged in running dispatches. He received two 'touches' by a bullet - one on the point of a figure, and the other grazed his knee - but he was never put out of action. However, he was subsequently killed. He was standing in the trenches, and the enemy were sending over shells one morning at 5 o'clock. One killed four men, and young McLean was among the victims.
    Mr and Mrs McLean received a curious premonition of disaster at the time of their soldier-son's death. Here is the story.
    "My wife and I were on the home farm near Murrayville at noon on a certain Sunday morning. Our daughter and a young lady guest were at church. I was writing a letter to the lad, when I thought I heard footsteps go into his room. My wife came out and asked me who went in there. I said I thought the girls were home from church and that our visitor had gone into this room, which she was occupying. My wife looked into the room and saw nobody, and then went outside and found that the girls were several hundred yards away from the place in the buggy on their way home from church. My wife said to me, "Did you hear anyone speak when you heard the footsteps coming into the room?" I replied that I did not and Mrs McLean added, "That is what brought me out. I heard someone say distinctly, "How are you" and I heard the footsteps. The reason why I came out was because you did not answer, and I wondered why you did not speak."
    "I only heard the footsteps", I said to my wife, and then added that I thought it was a sort of message to say that our son had been killed.
    My wife said, "That is what I think."
    And it turned out that is about that date that he was killed."   [2
    Cause of death Killed when serving with the AIF during World War I  [1
    Military Service 13 Aug 1918  Brae France Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    1st AIF in WW1 - killed in Brae, France 
    Died 13 Aug 1918  Brae France Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Person ID I-3198  Christina and Donald McLean | John McLean's descendants
    Last Modified 30 Apr 2020 

    Father Donald Henry b1854 MCLEAN,   b. 27 Aug 1854, Angas Plains SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 26 Sep 1933, Murrayville SA Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 79 years) 
    Relationship -1053 
    Mother Ellen Johannah FORD,   b. 1871, Gilberton SA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Apr 1949, Birdwoodton Vic Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years) 
    Relationship -1053 
    Married 23 Feb 1889  Norwood SA Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    • Married at 18yoa Wesleyan Parsonage Norwood (source SAGHS) Husband was 34yoa. First born that year and four other children.
    Family ID F-1053  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    0313 - Colin D S McLean.jpg
    0313 - Colin D S McLean.jpg


    Colin D S McLean

  • Sources 
    1. [S-3] BRB 'Donald & Christina McLean & Their Descendants', 1995 copies available, Copies of the BRB available Strathalbyn National Trust Museum & Library, several libraries around Australia including State Library SA, and Western Australian Genealogical Society Bayswater WA Request assistance for locating a copy through 'Contact us' on this website. .

    2. [S-71] NEWSPAPER TROVE Adelaide Register SA, Page 15 of 26th May 1923 .

    3. [S-111] DIGGER DISCS Births SA 1842-1906, (SAGHS), https://www.genealogysa.org.au requires log in , 1.5.2022 Researcher Lorna McLean.
      Groom Surname:MCLEAN Groom Given Names:Donald Henry Bride Surname:FORD Bride Given Names:Ellen Johannah
      Marriage Date:23-Feb-1889 Marriage Place:Wesleyan Parsonage Norwood SA Groom Age:34 Groom Marital Status:W Groom Father:John MCLEAN Bride Age:17 Bride Marital Status:S Bride Father:Jessie FORD District:Norwood book/Page:158/662