In March 1916 Charles Russell was a 39 year old married man working as a motorman and living with his Elsie and family of 6 children in Tamar Street, Launceston. His first wife had died in childbirth in 1900. On enlistment he was allotted to D Company, 40th Battalion and departed Tasmania on the Berrima with the first contingent of the battalion. Apart from an offence committed in March 1919 when back in England and being given leave, Private Russell seems to have managed to remain healthy and not to be wounded in action. He returned to Australia in April 1919. He later became a tram conductor. Charles and Elsie had two more children after his return from active service.