The Soldier's Details
- First Name:
- Jack Kenneth
- Nick Name:
- Dag Arse, Sheeps Bum Changed his name to John Lane after war.
- Regimental #:
- ‘A’ Company
- Place of Birth:
- Ramsgate, Kent, England
- Father's Name:
- Not Known
- Mothers's Name:
- Mrs Buckthorpe (nee Ramsbottom)
- Church of England
- Pre-war Occupation:
- Selarang Camp Changi; River Valley Road Camp; Mount Pleasant Camp; Selarang Barracks Camp
- ‘ J ’ Force Japan, Wales Maru Party
- Camps Japan:
- Kobe, Kawasaki Camp, Maruyama Park, Wakinhama
- Kobe; Kawasaki Camp; Maruyama Park; Wakinohama
- Return Details 1945:
- Yokohama-Okinawa by aircraft; Okinawa-Manila by aircraft; Manila-Sydney, HMS Formidable; Sydney-Melbourne-Perth by troop train
Soldier was a Kingsley Fairbridge Schoolboy.
John enlisted AIF 4 July 1941 later joining ‘A’ Company No 5 Platoon under Commanding Officers Lt. Brian Walton and Lt Learmonth.
As a POW in Singapore he sailed to Japan with ‘J’ Force. Please read further.
After his discharge this soldier re-enlisted in the Australian Regular Army in 1950 under the legally adopted name of John Kenneth Lane with the Regiment No. 5/1507. He served 16 years with the Western Command Band before being posted to the Army Apprentices School in Victoria where he served a further two years as a music teacher before retiring with the rank of Staff Sergeant. This 18 years additional service qualified him for the Long Service and Good Conduct Medals. After his discharge from the Regular Army, he served another year as Bandmaster in the Western Command Reserve Band with the rank of W.O.1. He was a member of the Combined Army bands which performed at the opening ceremony of the Melbourne Olympics in 1956.
John Lane is the author of several books, including ‘Fairbridge Kid’ and ‘Summer will come Again’ his personal story of his POW years in Japan.
John was a member of ‘J’ Force transported from Singapore to Japan to a POW Camp at Kobe mid 1943. Some of the details of Kobe House are found at the story Kobe House, Japan.
Listen to the oral history interview of John recorded in Singapore February 2001.
View Peter Winstanley’s video interview of John Lane (Ramsbottom) WX14836.
Trevor James, Jim Burns, Alf Worth, John Lane, Des Colevas, Bob Whitield, Joe Pearce (rear), Tom Pilmoor (front), Owen Morris, Jim Elliott, Ron Badock, Gordon Lynam
Back Row L-R: Jim Burns, John Lane, Jim Elliott, Cowboy Matthews, Frank Evans, Alf Worth, Trevor James, Wally Lynn, Les Cody, Owen Morris
Front Row L-R: Greg Burdon, Ron Badock, Des Coleves, Jim Gilmour, Joe Pearce.Back Row L-R: Jim Burns, John Lane, Jim Elliott, Cowboy Matthews, Frank Evans, Alf Worth, Trevor James, Wally Lynn, Les Cody, Owen Morris
John & Rhonda Lane with ‘Cowboy’ Matthews & Joe Beattie (Beattie Collection)
Above: Also from Beattie Collection.
John Lane also wrote ‘Sayonara Australia’ and ‘Summer Will Come Again’.
These are from Beattie Colllection dated 8 August 1987 – Western Mail
Below: Beattie Collection West Australian 13 Aug 1987
The above from Beattie Collection
John Lane passed away 24th June 2008 of Motor Neurone Disease, a long illness he fought courageously against. On the 29th June a service was held at Fairbridge to celebrate his life.
Throughout his life John continued his close relationship with Fairbridge and Old Fairbridgians Assoc.
John must have been working in the region of Gnowangerup before enlisting.
‘Kobe, Japan. c. August 1945. Wakinohama Prisoner of War (POW) camp after it had been liberated. A number of allied flags are flying, including a United States flag closest to view. Members of a United States unit who presumably liberated the camp are left and right and a sandbagged entrance is just outside the building. Many Australians were held here, including members of 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion. (Donor J. Lane)’ from AWM.
Whilst residing a Pinjarra and a member of Mandurah RSL, John wrote the following pieces for inclusion in their news magazines.
- Mount Pleasant Camp - Singapore
- River Valley Road Camp - Singapore
- Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
- Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
- Kawasaki, Maruyama Park - Japan
- Kobe, Osaka #2-B - Japan ***
- Wakinohama, Osaka #14-B - Japan