Stephen enlisted on 27 January 1916 at West Maitland naming his next of kin as his father Benjamin Sheather of Central Lansdowne. According to his enlistment form he was 18 years of age, employed as a labourer and living at Central Lansdowne. He was initially allocated to ‘D’ Company, 34th Battalion at Rutherford. Stephen embarked on 2 May 1916 on the “Hororata” and arrived at Plymouth on 23 June 1916. He sailed for France on 30 September 1916 and was taken on the strength of the 54th Battalion in the field. He succumbed to trench feet and was admitted to the 5th A.F.A. on 14 December 1916. He did not return to his unit until 30 December 1916. He was admitted to the 15th F.A. on 30 April 1917 suffering once again from trench feet and influenza. He passed from the field Ambulance to the C.C.S. and then to 18th G.H. at Camiers. Stephen re-joined his battalion on 1 August 1917 but was back in hospital with influenza again on 11 October 1917. He was evacuated to England and admitted to Northampton War Hospital on 29 October 1917. He was discharged to No 3 Command Depot on 23 November 1917 and on 20 February 1918 moved on to the Overseas Training Brigade. Stephen crossed over to France on 8 May 1918. On 29 June 1918 he suffered from gas inhalation and was treated at the 18th A.F.A. before moving on to the 20th C.C.S. and finally the 41st Stationary Hospital. Stephen returned to his unit on 13 August 1918 and on 11 October 1918 was transferred to the 56th Battalion. He was granted leave to the U.K. on 8 March 1919. He then returned to France to await a ship home. Stephen embarked for England at Le Havre on 30 April 1919 and then for Australia on the “Orita” on 23 June 1919.