3 Pioneer Battalion waiting at Port Melbourne to board the Karoo, 1916. AWM PB0514
When the War broke out in Europe, John Mathew Farrell was working on ships as a marine fireman. He didn't join the AIF immediately, and Rod Martin, who tells his story, considers some of the reasons for this, as well as the pressures involved. Although he enlisted from Scotia Street in Moonee Ponds, he was a country boy from Wangaratta, one of ten children. Two of his brothers also served. In his story, Rod describes the lot of the Pioneer, and John Farrell's part in putting out the fires on the Western Front.