Herbert George Wishart (more commonly known as Albert) was born in 1886 in Richmond, Victoria. His parents, Alexander and Jane Wishart were married in 1881 and he was the second of six children born to the couple, but the first of five to survive into adulthood. His family originated in Kincardineshire and emigrated to Victoria in 1854 with Albert’s father the first of the family to be born in Australia.
Before the war, Albert worked as a baker and was serving an apprenticeship in Tasmania when enlisted in the Army during October 1914. He was initially assigned to the 7th Battery, Field Artillery and was involved in the Gallipoli campaign with the 3rd Field Coy Engineers.
Albert was wounded at the start of June 1915, however, he made a quick recovery and was soon back in action, but at the end of August was sent to a hospital in Alexandria suffering from dyspepsia.
In early 1916 Albert was transferred to a hospital in Colchester, England to recuperate, and for the remainder of 1916 was not what you might call a model soldier – repeatedly finding himself being punished for an array of unrecorded misdemeanours. He was eventually posted to France in December 1916 but appears to have spent much of the next two years in and out of field ambulances and base hospitals.
Albert’s war came to an end in October 1918 when he was sent back to Australia where he found work as a platelayer, met Mary Maud Alice Jones and married her the following year.
Albert and Mary eventually became parents to three children and lived in Geelong until Albert’s untimely death on January 1928, when he was found drowned in the sea. Witnesses told an enquiry that Albert had been depressed as a result of his war injury, and following a lengthy spell in the Caulfield Military Hospital, had left without the knowledge of the staff and made his way to the pier at Point Ormond, where he took his own life by tying a life-saving body hook around his neck and jumping off.
Albert was buried in the Geelong Eastern Cemetery.