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The Book Thief

Keith Heritage (1882-1916)

Keith’s sporting interests lay in sculling, and he had his eye on representing Australia at the 1912 Olympic Games in Stockholm when he was replaced at the last moment.
He also shared his brothers’ interest in the military, and was a member of the local volunteer force in Launceston.
Soon after war was declared in August 1914, Keith volunteered for active service. He enlisted in the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force to New Guinea, and later served with the 19th Battalion. Landing at Anzac on 21 August he saw action at Hill 60, and later in the defence of Pope’s Hill.
On the Western Front in June 1916, he earned the Military Cross for his ‘coolness and much dash’ with a raiding party. Less than a week later, Captain Keith Heritage was killed in action at Pozieres.

Photographed just weeks after the death of Captain Heritage, the view from ‘Centre Way’ trench on the plateau north of Pozieres, looking towards ‘Old German 1’ or ‘OG1’. On the horizon are the ruins of the Pozieres windmill, and a shell is exploding.
Photographed just weeks after the death of Captain Heritage, the view from ‘Centre Way’ trench on the plateau north of Pozieres, looking towards ‘Old German 1’ or ‘OG1’. On the horizon are the ruins of the Pozieres windmill, and a shell is exploding.

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