What's On - 21 May 2020

  • Ceremony: Shrine Monthly Memorial Service - May 2020

    Thursday 21 May 2020, 11:30am

    Wreath Laying in the Sanctuary

    Shrine Representatives:

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    In the month of May, we commemorate the following events:

    3 May 1917: the Second Battle of Bullecourt
    Australian forces launched a successful attack at Bullecourt, France, as part of the Arras campaign. Allied casualties for the battle totalled 7,000. 

    30 May 1942: the '1000 Bomber Raid'
    Numerous RAAF crews of Bomber Command took part in the first of the '1000 Bomber' raids on Nazi Germany. Bomber Command suffered the highest casualty rates of any Allied service during the war, and more than 3,500 Australians alone would lose their lives on bomber operations. 

    14 May 1943: Sinking of the Hospital Ship Centaur.
    Australian Hospital Ship Centaur was sunk off the coast of Queensland in one of the most controversial incidents of the Second World War. Clearly marked and lit as a hospital ship with the Red Cross, a Japanese submarine nevertheless sank her in May 1943. Only 64 of the 332 souls on board survived, including just one of the 12 nurses. Images of the sinking Centaur would beocme part of Australian propaganda for the rest of the war.

    29 May 1945: the Second Sandakan Death March
    Australian and British POWs in Japanese hands, already abused and malnourised, were forced to carry Japanese supplies from Sandakan to Ranau. Hundreds died along the way, perishing of disease, starvation, or at the hands of their guards. The survivors faced further abuse at the hands of the Japanese, and by the end of the war only six men of the approximately 1000 to take part in the Death Marches were alive.