Theatres of war
Douglas district soldiers defended Australia in deserts, in jungle and in the air.
Soldiers who fought in the desert of North Africa near Tobruk became ’ The Rats of Tobruk’.
Pte William Lematy from Mt Molloy died here, 25 May 1915.
Part of Bill’s last letter to his sisters read: ’I am up in the desert now, it’s a fair cow up here: dust storms every second day; the dust is everywhere. It gets in your mouth, ears, nose and eyes.. The fleas are cows too; I’m scratching nearly all night.’
Jungle fighting in Borneo was a real slog; it was much easier by air.
Ken Shirley, who enlisted in WA but came to Port Douglas later, flew as a crewman of No. 93 Squadron RAAF.
Well known Mossman identity Ken Ziegler served on Morotai (part of the then Dutch East Indies, now Indonesia) in the 9th Repair and Services Unit, RAAF.
In Papua New Guinea, fierce fighting took place from Milne Bay to Lae; and along the famous Kokoda track, with Derek Goodman from Mossman among the many brave Australians.