EDITH FLORENCE ( QUEE­NIE) AVENELL

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

BORN: Gympie, 1890 Died: Bris­bane, 1936 Ser­vice: Staff nurse, Aus­tralian Army Nurs­ing Ser­vice ( AANS), No. 1 Aus­tralian Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal, France and Eng­land.

Quee­nie Avenell trained as a nurse at Mackay Hos­pi­tal and just two years later, at the age of 25, was ap­pointed ma­tron at Bowen Hos­pi­tal. She en­listed for the war ef­fort on April 26 , 1915 in Townsville where her fam­ily lived.

Af­ter work­ing at He­liopo­lis, Egypt, treat­ing the wounded from Gal­lipoli, Quee­nie went on to France to nurse the sick and wounded at the No. 1 Aus­tralian Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal. She wrote many let­ters home to her fam­ily de­scrib­ing her ex­pe­ri­ences: “All my boys are ei­ther winged or legs off, shoul­ders blown away, big head wounds, but nearly all healed up and just lit­tle pieces of dead bone keep­ing them from heal­ing up al­to­gether. They are such fine fel­lows. Some have only had 12 oper­a­tions.” Af­ter the war Quee­nie nursed at the army hos­pi­tal at Kan­ga­roo Point, Bris­bane and in 1919 mar­ried a doc­tor named Har­vey Walsh. Har­vey had saved her life the pre­vi­ous year when she fell ill with ptomaine poi­son­ing.

Group por­trait of the staff of No. 1 Aux­il­iary Hos­pi­tal, 1st Aus­tralian Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal. Quee­nie Avenell is last on the right in front.

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