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Graham Atkinson

Craftsman Graham Atkinson (left) is seen in a Centurion tank. Atkinson, a Dja Dja Wurrung Yorta Yorta man, was called up for National Service in Vietnam in 1968. He served as a gun fitter, maintaining the cannons on tanks in the Light Aid Detachment, Royal Australian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Royal Australian Regiment. 

Seeing the living conditions of the Vietnamese people and witnessing racial abuse from Australian and United States troops towards them had a profound effect on Atkinson. 

Vietnam politicised my identity ... it gave me strength, respect, a sense of dignity for all. 

Graham Atkinson, interview, 2010 

Craftsman Graham Atkinson 1968
photographer unknown

View the video series In our words, to hear first hand accounts of First Peoples service from the veterans themselves, and their families.

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