VP Day in Darwin

A commemorative ceremony for Victory in the Pacific Day took place in Darwin at the USS Peary Memorial.

28 October 2020

The image below shows Austin Asche AC QC being presented with a Commemorative Medallion and Certificate of Commemoration by the local Member for Parliament, Luke Gosling. Mr Asche served in the RAAF from 1944 to 1946 and in 1987 became Chief Justice of the Northern Territory Supreme Court. He was the Administrator of the Northern Territory from 1993 to 1997. He is believed to be the only surviving Second World War veteran living in Darwin.

A young man, kneeling down on one knee, presents a medallion to an elderly veteran man who is sitting down on a plastic chair.

Darwin played a significant role in Australia’s Second World War history, and was repeatedly bombed as part of an air campaign fought across northern Australia. The most notable battle, the Bombing of Darwin, occurred on 19 February 1942 when around 250 Australians and Allied personnel were killed by 188 Japanese aircraft. The destroyer USS Peary was sunk during the bombing and remains in Darwin Harbour today.

An old photograph of the destroyer USS Peary, before the bombing of Darwin.