John Ross, 110, WWI veteran, oldest man in Australia
SYDNEY - John "Jack" Ross, Australia's oldest man and the last remaining Australian to have served in World War I, died Wednesday, Veterans' Affairs Minister Alan Griffin said.
He was 110.
Mr. Ross died in his sleep at a nursing home in the Victoria state city of Bendigo.
Mr. Ross enlisted in the Australian Imperial Force in February 1918 at the age of 18 and was posted to the First Battalion at Broadmeadows camp in Victoria. But the war ended before he could be sent overseas, and he was discharged on Christmas Eve that year.
Mr. Ross was the last of the 417,000 Australians who served in World War I, Griffin said.
"Mr. Ross showed his willingness to serve Australia and her allies in what was an extremely tumultuous time in our history, and for that we are grateful," Griffin said in a statement.
Mr. Ross served again in World War II as a member of the volunteer defense corps.
He also spent more than 45 years working for the Victorian railway before retiring in 1964.
Mr. Ross leaves his daughter Peggy, his son Robert, and four grandchildren.