William Valentine Steele (1894 - 1918)

A photo of William Valentine Steele
William Valentine Steele
1894 - 1918
updated February 06, 2019
William Valentine Steele was born on February 7, 1894 at Lady Bowen Hospital, Brisbane, QLD Australia. He was born to Ellen (Steele) Schekoske and Xavier Schekoske, with siblings Eva, Mary, Nicholas, and Albert. He died on April 5, 1918 in Warloy-Baillon, Picardy France at 24 years of age.

William was born in the Women's Refuge and Infants Home Turbot Street Brisbane to a young 20 year old Ellen Steele. In the first 8 years of life he grew up in the Glamorganvale area not far from Ipswich. He attended the local State School under the name of William Schekoske-his stepfather's name. He formed a bond with Valentine Schekoske-his step grandfather and in 1898 with his parents lived on Valentine's property until they headed north to Wondai in 1903.William adopted Valentine as his middle name when enlisting for WW1. At Wondai he attended Mondure North Provisional School along with his half brothers and sisters. In 1906 he faced a future without a father as Xavier (his stepfather) passed away.His mother Ellen Schekoske nee Steele marries a John Kluck in 1908 and the age of 14 William had a new stepfather. William leaves school at age 13 and is working on his family farm. The farm totalled a massive 320 acres and ran along Flats Road Chelmsford. At the age of 21 William enlists and leaves on the 31st January 1916 onboard the Wandilla for his great adventure. He is initially attached to the 25th Battalion 9-12 reinforcements but transferred to the 49th Battalion in April 1916. William is seriously wounded on the attack on Mouquet Farm on the 3/9/1916 and is sent back to Old Blighty to recuperate. Whilst recovering at Monte Video Campsite Weymouth William decides to take an early mark for New Year.He takes leave on the 29th December 1916 and is absent until the 3rd January 1917. At some point William sends home to his mother a tapestry from France which is framed and still with us today.William is injured on 4 more occasions and on the 5th of April 1918 and only 6 months from coming home he is mortally wounded. The A.I.F. sent home photographs of his grave to his mother which is also still with us today. I am proud of my ancestor.

William Valentine Steele Biography

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Most Commonly Known Name

William Valentine Steele

First name


Middle name


Last Name(s)

Nickname(s) or aliases




William Steele was born on at Lady Bowen Hospital, Turbot Street, in Brisbane, QLD Australia 4001


William Steele died on in Warloy-Baillon, Somme County, Picardy France

Cause of death

Died of Wounds

Burial / Funeral

at Warloy-baillon Communal Cemetery Extension, in France


Ethnicity & Lineage


Nationality & Locations Lived



Church of England

Last Known Residence

Unknown. Did William move a lot? Where was his last known location?


Glamorgan Vale State School-(1902 until end of 1904)
Mondure North Provisional School-(1905 until end of 1907)



Personal Life & Organizations

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Military Service

Service number: France
Rank: Private
Regiment: Australian Imperial Force
Unit/ship/squadron: 49th Battalion

Average Age

Life Expectancy

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William Valentine Steele Family Tree

William's immediate relatives including parents, siblings, partnerships and children in the Steele family tree.


Ellen (Steele) Schekoske
Jan 15, 1874 - Jan 21, 1928
Chelmsford, QLD, Australia


Eva Ellen Schekoske
Nov 3, 1898 - 1977
Nundah, QLD, Australia
Nicholas Andrew Schekoske
Apr 23, 1902 - Oct 16, 1982
Albert Valentine Schekoske
Oct 1, 1903 - Sep 29, 1981
Wondai, QLD, Australia


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William's Family Photos

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William Steele Obituary

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William is on the Wondai RSL Board of Remembrance & Honour Stone Ipswich Qld

Other Records of William Valentine Steele

1894 - 1918 World Events

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In 1894, in the year that William Valentine Steele was born, large reserves of oil were discovered on the Osage Indian reservation in Oklahoma. Previously thought to be "useless" land - not even good for farming - the tribe had bought the land themselves. The discovery of oil made the Osage the "richest group of people in the world" at the time.

In 1900, he was just 6 years old when the U.S. population exceeded 75 million, rising about 13 million from the 1890 census. 87.9% of the population was white, 11.6% was African-American, 0.7% was Hispanic, and 0.5% was Native American, Asian, and other minorities.

In 1902, at the age of merely 8 years old, William was alive when the modern air conditioner was invented by Willis H. Carrier. The company that he worked for needed to find a way to control humidity and by solving this problem, Carrier created a system that could be used for cooling the rooms of a house. The Sun Belt thanks him!

In 1918, in the year of William Valentine Steele's passing, on November 1, an elevated train on the Brooklyn line of the subway - driven by an inexperienced operator because of a strike - tried to navigate a turn at 30mph. The limit on the curve was 6 mph. The 2nd and 3rd cars of the 5 car wooden train were badly damaged and at least 93 people were killed, making it the deadliest crash in New York subway history.

Other Biographies

Other William Steeles

William Vaughan Steele
around 1892 - Apr 29, 1918

Other Steeles

William Vaughan Steele
around 1892 - Apr 29, 1918
Wilson Steele
around 1885 - Sep 22, 1914
Winifred Mary Steele
around 1891 - Dec 9, 1918
Alfred Francis James Steele-Nicholson
around 1886 - Aug 16, 1917
John Edwin Charles Steele-Nicholson
around 1922 - Sep 14, 1942
William Herbert Hamilton Steele-Nicholson
around 1875 - Apr 13, 1918
Cyril Steele Steele-Perkins
around 1887 - Aug 26, 1914
Evelyn Creen Stuart Wilson-Steele
around 1915 - Nov 17, 1942

Other Bios

William Vaughan Steele
around 1892 - Apr 29, 1918
Wilson Steele
around 1885 - Sep 22, 1914
Winifred Mary Steele
around 1891 - Dec 9, 1918
Alfred Francis James Steele-Nicholson
around 1886 - Aug 16, 1917
John Edwin Charles Steele-Nicholson
around 1922 - Sep 14, 1942
William Herbert Hamilton Steele-Nicholson
around 1875 - Apr 13, 1918
Cyril Steele Steele-Perkins
around 1887 - Aug 26, 1914
A W Steeles
Died: Aug 17, 1916
Herbert Steeles
around 1895 - Jun 4, 1915
Alfred Walter Steeley
Died: Apr 23, 1917
Arthur Steeley
Died: Oct 7, 1916
G Steeley
Died: Aug 14, 1916
George William Steeley
around 1887 - Apr 26, 1918
Henry John Steeley
around 1917 - Jan 18, 1940
Herbert Walter Steeley
around 1888 - Jul 3, 1915
John William Frazer Steeley
around 1923 - Nov 10, 1944
M J Steeley
Died: Sep 30, 1917
Douglas George Buchan Steell
around 1921 - Nov 21, 1940
James Steell
around 1893 - Mar 17, 1917
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