Onscreen text: 1 million Australians enlisted to serve in the Second World War. Legendary entertainer, Smoky Dawson, was one of them.
He never forgot the morning he farewelled his new wife, Dot, and headed off to war…
Smoky Dawson: And we both said to each other, we promise that we wouldn’t look back when we said goodbye. And I remember this last kiss – and I turned my back on her and walked down the hill.
And I heard the train. And I never looked back at Dot – I couldn’t bear to look back.
I got down there just as the train pulled in and I sat down on the seat, and as the train started moving out, I happened to look out, and I saw at the top of a hill, where I left my wife with her apron, waving … and these three pine trees.
And the big, tough soldier that was going out to do what he was going to do, broke down, and I bawled like a kid.
And I really didn’t think I would see her again. I couldn’t see how I could ever see her again. And I was terrified. I was terrified.
Onscreen text: Smoky Dawson, AM, MBE, 1913 –2008