Apr 24, 2018 6:30 PM
Richard Wilmott
ANZAC MEETING - Impact of Wars on antecedent family

Richard shall relate 2 stories from WW1 and one from WW2 which had a direct impact on some of my antecedent family.

His fathers two cousins fought and died on the Western Front. One of the cousins (Charles Aitkens) wrote continuously to his mother from the war until his death in battle in 1918. 

Richard has just discovered that his mother donated those letters to the Australian War Museum in 1926 and his family has obtained copies of the letters. Richard shall read some of these in which Charles describes, amongst others things, his experiences at Gallipoli.

Richard's Grand Father, Allan Crouch, also fought in WW1. His war ended in France when he was shot 4 times on the first day of the battle of Fromelles on 19 July,1916 . He survived and lived into his mid seventies.

Richard shall conclude by discussing the 1942 shooting of 22 Australian nurses by Japanese soldiers on Bangka Island in the Dutch East Indies (now part of Indonesia). One of those killed was his fathers sister... Richards Aunt. One nurse, sister Vivian Bullwinkle, miraculously survived to later tell of the massacre. "