was a central person in Ross Bastiaan’s life. McCarthy’s only child
who was then engaged to Bastiaan’s mother was killed in action on
Bougainville Island in 1945. Despite the devastating loss, McCarthy
stayed in contact with her and when Ross was born in 1951 the VC winner
was always close at hand and a generous support to the family. In
particular McCarthy played an important part in Ross’s schooling at
Wesley College where his own son had been educated. Ross effectively was
his defacto grand son – the grand son he never had.
learnt much of what he knew about the war from McCarthy and in the books
he was given by him that covered the many battles McCarthy fought in
from The Landing at Anzac to the Hindenburg Line. McCarthy died in 1975
and in 1990 and 1993 a rare
opportunity arose for Ross
Bastiaan to repay a debt. He was able to place a plaque on each and
every battleground that McCarthy fought on during the Great War. There
is no doubt that the Bastiaan plaques would never have occurred if
Lawrence McCarthy had not been part of his life.
In memory of Lieutenant Lawrence Dominic McCarthy, V.C., C de G.
(1892-1975), 16th Australian Infantry Battalion, A.I.F.
Here on 23 August 1918, he single-handedly captured 460 metres of German
trench line at the western edge of bois a fame (famous wood), 5 machine
guns and over 50 prisoners. For this conspicuous bravery, initiative and
leadership he was awarded the Victoria Cross and the Croix de Guerre.
In small print on bottom margin.
Erected 23 August 1993 as a mark of gratitude for the goals and values
he gave to my life (Ross J Bastiaan Melbourne)