These pages are dedicated to my father Ken Heyes, his good friend, Ernie
Badham and all the other brave soldiers who spent so many years in the
hell-holes that were the Japanese P.O.W camps during World War II. My
Dad is not with us to tell his own story although he did keep a diary of
those times which is now in the Canberra War Memorial. I have used the
story that Ernie wrote about his experiences in these camps as it also
includes mention of my dad and is a wonderful, moving tribute to all
those brave men.
Dad also did many drawings in the
long nights after they finished 12 to 14 hours working on the rail and I
have included some of them throughout these pages and at the end of
if you would like to have a quick look.
I was prompted to publish their
story by a news article that once again the soldiers who were prisoners
of the Japanese in World War II, have had their claim for compensation
rejected by the Japanese government. I challenge anyone to read the
following and not believe that these brave men deserve the highest
compensation for the inhumane way they were treated. My mother does not have her husband
by her side in her old age, my sister and I do not have our father and
our children never had a chance to know their grandfather because of the
treatment he received in the P.O.W camps, which ultimately resulted in
his death some thirty-five years later.
Soon there will be none of these
brave men left to seek compensation, only their loved ones who are still
suffering from their absence. For my dad and his mates - Lest we
23 May, 2001 - Congratulations to the Australian Government, who
in their budget last night, announced a $25 000 payout for Japanese
POW's or their surviving spouses. Great to see they haven't been
forgotten by our government at least!!
I often have people asking
questions about the POW camps and unfortunately don't have anyone who
can answer them. Now however, many thanks to Wayne Joseph and his dad
James who will be glad to answer any questions about the War days. Their
email is: firstname.lastname@example.org if
anyone would like to contact them. Thanks again for the offer Wayne.
I have now commenced trying to
decipher my Dad's Diary that he kept from the time he was captured until
his release. I'll add a link to it here once I've done it.
Pages by Glenda Crew, 6
copyright S. Badham
copyright M. Heyes
for the Grace of God....."