GUEST SPEAKER - Rotarian Darryl King,
Darryl spoke of his grandfather, Arthur King, a brave man who paid the ultimate sacrifice as a prisoner of war on the island of Ambon. Arthur joined the army in 1940, leaving his wife at home with two young sons in Melbourne. His first billet with the 2/21 AIF was on the Goulburn banks at Trawool, where 750 eventually made their way to Darwin, to be transported by ship to Ambon. Dur-ing active conflict with the Japanese in 1942, 39 officers and 750 rank soldiers were taken as pris-oners of war, suffering terrible treatment. A group of 11 men risked their lives to leave, unlaw-fully, the compound each evening to forage and scrounge for food to bring back to the prisoners. On 21 November 1942, these 11 brave men were taken to the Japanese HQ where they were executed and buried in a mass grave. Ar-thurs’ widow was not notified of this outcome until 1945 when she received an offi-cial telegram. A war cemetery has since been developed and maintained to honor these brave men. Darryl has a collection of letters from Arthur to his wife, a letter from the King, and the official telegrams from the army.
3 minute speaker, Paul Kellet
Paul spoke of his career as an electrical engineer, particularly where he worked in the oil and petrochemical industry and had the op-opportunities to work in the South Pacific where he commissioned electrical control systems. Paul enjoyed the history and beauty of the is-lands.
Flowerdale Primary school catered for the evening, thankyou!