Benjamin Combo

Benjamin Combo was born in Dalby, Qld in 1889. At the time of his first enlistment in Bendigo on the 16th December 1915, it is noted that his occupation was that of a horse breaker and that his parents were both deceased. His Uncle Fredrick Morgan was identified as being next of kin.

The Bendigo authorities asked the Victoria Barracks: “He is very black for a half-caste. Is it correct to enlist him?”, and so Benjamin Combo was discharged after only 19 day for not being of direct European descent. He enlisted again 10 months later, this time in Albury, now stating his occupation as a drover and next of kin as Aunt Mary Combo.

At the time of his second enlistment, he honestly stated the reason for his previous discharge, but is accepted and assigned to the NSW based 3rd Infantry Battalion as Driver (probably of horses). He took his oath to serve his King and country and sailed from Sydney on the troopship HMAT Benalla A24. However, en route from Dakar, West Africa to England, Pte. Combo died of pneumonia and was buried at sea in the last days of 1916.

Archive Items For This Person

Benjamin Combo on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial

Listing of Benjamin Combo’s name on the Roll of Honour at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.   → View item

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