Australia deployed over 60,000 servicemen and women to the conflict in Vietnam between 1962 and 1975; Australians served between 1962 and 1973, and again for a brief period in 1975. During this operational commitment, 521 Australians lost their lives and the majority of these were repatriated to Australia for burial and commemoration.
For more information on the history of the Vietnam War see Vietnam War 1962–75, Australian War Memorial.
Repatriation from Terendak Military Cemetery, Malaysia
On 25 May 2015, the Australian Government extended an offer or repatriation to the families of 36 Australian servicemen and dependants buried in the Terendak Military Cemetery in Malaysia, and the Military Annex of the Kranji War Cemetery in Singapore. The families of 33 Australians accepted the Government’s offer of repatriation.
The repatriation, coordinated by the Office of Australian War Graves (OAWG), was one of the largest single repatriations in our country’s history.
On 2 June 2016, the nation welcomed home 33 Australians home in a repatriation ceremony at the Royal Australian Air Force Base Richmond, Sydney. Following the ceremony, families held private reinternment services at locations of their choosing.
Three Australian casualties of the Vietnam War remain buried in the Terendak Military Cemetery. Their graves will continue to be maintained by OAWG in perpetuity.
The decision to take up the offer of repatriation rested solely with the families and arrangements for repatriation and reinternment were made in accordance with their wishes and with respect for their privacy.
The Australian Government is grateful for the care and respect the Malaysian and Singaporean Governments have shown in looking after the graves of these Australians for some 50 years.
Australian service men returned in the Terendak Repatriation
Cemeteries and Gardens of Remembrance in Australia
Since 1966, Australian service personnel who die in conflicts overseas are repatriated to Australia if practicable and requested by the next of kin. The official commemoration for each of the Vietnam War dead in Australia is either at the gravesite or crematorium or separately in a Garden of Remembrance, again at the choice of the next of kin.
Vietnam Veterans' Education Centre
The Vietnam Veterans’ Education Centre (VVEC) will be a state of the art digital education and exhibition facility located on the National Mall, adjacent to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, in Washington DC, United States of America.
Vietnam Forces National Memorial
The Australian Vietnam Forces National Memorial on Anzac Parade, Canberra is dedicated to Australians who served, suffered and died in the Vietnam War. Responsibility for maintaining the memorial rests with the National Capital Authority.
For more information see Vietnam Forces National Memorial, National Capital Authority website.
Roll of Honour and Nominal Roll searches
- Roll of Honour This Australian War Memorial database can be searched to locate information on Australian war dead from the Vietnam War and other conflicts.
- Nominal Roll of Vietnam Veterans The Nominal Roll of Vietnam service personnel lists the men and women who served in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) in the Vietnam War.
- Contact OAWG for help to find where a particular person is buried.