SERGEANT EDRIC DOYLE KIDSON
25TH APRIL 1915 AGE 22
BURIED: BABY 700, ANZAC, TURKEY
It's not immediately obvious what Sergeant Kidson's inscription, or rather the first four words of it, means, even though his mother intended it to be very specific. However, there are a number of clues: first the date of his death - 25 April 1915, the first day of the Gallipoli landings - second the cemetery, Baby 700, one of the first objectives on the first day, and third Edric Doyle's battalion, the 12th Australian Infantry, the covering force for the landings. The 12th landed at 4.30 am and within hours small parties had reached the peak of Baby 700. But by the evening they were unable to hold the position and were forced to withdraw. Allied forces never reached this position again during the whole Gallipoli campaign - and nor was Edric Kidson ever seen again after this action.
Enquiries by the Australian Red Cross elicited confused reports - Kidson was a prisoner in Constantinople; he had returned to Australia having been wounded; he was alive and well on the peninsular in October 1915. But Corporal Reddrop reported that "he accompanied informant right out to Gaba Tepe, when acting as a covering line. He (Kidson) was not with the company when they were ordered to retire."
Once the war was over, Kidson's body was discovered, identified and buried near where he had been killed. And after all the confusion, his mother was determined that people should know exactly what had happened. She filled in the circular for the Roll of Honour for Australia with more than usually precise details.
Date of death: 25th April 1915 (before noon)
Age at time of death: 22 years and 3 months
Any other biographical details likely to be of interest to the Historian of the A.I.F., or his Regiment: He as acting Platoon Commander did reach on the extreme heights of Gallipoli an objective never afterwards obtained and that a few hours after the landing at dawn.
This is why Edric Doyle Kidson's inscription reads: "Reached the farthest objective". The second part of the inscription is a popular choice based on the Old Testament Song of Solomon: Until the day break and the shadows flee away.