From the left - Harry's 3 brothers WWI, my grandfather WWI, Nana's brother WWI, Nana's father Boer War, Dad and Harry WWII. Two great uncles from my Mum's family also served in WWI
My Dad joined the RAAF in 1943, just two months after his 18th birthday. He spent time in New Guinea and was nearly shot in the head by one of the men in his unit. I seem to remember Dad saying that the bloke went crazy one day and fired a shot at him. He never joined the RSL or attended Anzac Day services and rarely spoke about the the war, preferring to forget.
Left - Dad and his step father Harry, just afer Dad joined up
I always think about my Nana, Dad's mother on Anzac Day Her first husband my grandfather, fought in France during WWI. He was injured (shell shock) and sent home, later discharged in 1916. Nana and Ernie married in 1918, he later abandoned them in 1928 when Dad was three.
Nana's second husband Harry joined the Army in 1941. I think Harry was an alcoholic before he joined or his time in the Middle East turned him into one. Alas he was dishonourably discharged for going AWOL on several occasions. He endured numerous health problems and spent periods of time in a psychiatric hospital following the war. I guess that would now be called post traumatic stress disorder.
A Christmas card and two compacts that Harry brought back from Jerusalem for Nana.
Tony and I usually attend the dawn service in Brisbane, unfortunately we didn't make it this year. War is a terrible thing but we should never forget those who have served and continue to serve to protect our freedom and way of life.