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Samuel Dean was single and 23 years old when he enlisted in Surrey Hills, Victoria, on 17th August 1914. Surrey Hills was the main metropolitan recruiting centre for the 8th Infantry Battalion. Before the war he had spent 3 years in the militia , with both the 7th Australian Infantry Regiment, and 70th Infantry Regiment. Private Dean embarked for return to Australia in HMAT Wiltshire on 31st August 1915. The ship carried a complement of doctors and nurses of the Sea Transport Staff who treated the patients during the voyage.. The ship carried wounded, injured and seriously ill soldiers as well as the isolated VD sufferers.
On 23rd December 1915 Private Dean was judged by the doctors to be cured, and was transferred to Broadmeadows Camp for employment. He was employed on general duties in the camp. On 6th April 1916 he was examined by a Medical Board to determine whether to return him to active service, or retain him at Broadmeadows or to discharge him. The Board decided that while he was well enough to earn his own living in Australia he was not well enough to return to active service, and so he was discharged 'medically unfit for active service' on 15th May 1916. Tree No. 7 , an elm, was planted by Miss E. Barnes, a 'Lucas Girl', on 4th June 1917.