So life and death is the difference between fore and aft as far as I’m concerned, and that really mirrors what life is really about, it’s such a thing of chance – Douglas Gilling, RAN Second World War veteran.
The four-episode series features extracts from oral history interviews from the Australian War Memorial collection and interviews recorded by DVA with Australian veterans of the Second World War. It traces their varied paths from the beginning of the war to the final victory in the Pacific, exploring stories of men and women who served in Australia and other theatres of war across the globe.
The first episode explores the experiences of Australians in the European theatre of the war; stories of sailors, troops and others who served in the Mediterranean, North Africa, Greece and Crete, and aircrew who served in Bomber, Fighter and Coastal commands.
Episode two features stories of those who served in the Pacific theatre. Episode three focuses on stories of women’s service.
The final episode reflects on the end of the war, the journey home and the varied emotions experienced on VP Day and in the aftermath of war.
Find all the episodes, and other fascinating documentaries, interviews and videos, on the Anzac Portal. You can start with Episode 1: Europe First.
An anti-aircraft crew pose with an unexploded bomb which they marked with the iconic ‘V’ for victory symbol after it landed only six metres from their gun, Tobruk, 1941.