The Soldier's Details

Surname:
O’Leary
First Name:
Daniel Martin
Nick Name:
Dan
Rank:
Lance Sergeant
Regimental #:
WX8174
Company:
‘A' Company
Enlisted:
16.08.1940
DOB:
3.03.1910
Place of Birth:
Kalgoorlie, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Jeremiah O’Leary
Mothers's Name:
Honorah Ethel O’Leary
Religion:
Roman Catholic
Pre-war Occupation:
Railway Fireman
Memorial:
Thanbyuzayat War Cemetery, Plot A13, Row C, Grave 2, Age 33.
Singapore:
Selarang Camp and Barracks Changi
Force:
‘F’ Force Thailand
Camps Thailand:
Kami Sonkurai
POW#:
3/6123
Cause of Death:
Malaria and Dysentery
Place of Death:
Kami Sonkurai
Date of Death:
14.11.1943
Buried:
Grave No. 344, Kani Sonkurai

General Description

Tea break before Darwin Oct 41 Standing L-R Fitzgerald, Minchin, Golden, Short, Vidler, ? , Jamieson, Cpl Lee, ?, ? , Ewen. Kneeling L-R Cpl Townsend, Gregory and RK O’Leary. Photo taken by Major Saggers.

 


NCO’s leg was amputated by Captain. J. L. Taylor, A.A.M.C.

 

 

Dan joined the WAGR workforce as a 16 year-old on 25 May 1926 and continued working as an employee until he enlisted in 1940.

In 1931 Electoral Roll Daniel O’Leary was a railway cleaner with WAGR and living with his parents Jeremiah and Honorah O’Leary (nee Quartermaine) at Narrogin. They had married at East Coolgardie in 1908.  Jeremiah was a loco engine driver and in 1931, the O’Leary family were residing at Clyde Street, Narrogin.

Dan had a sister Aileen and brother Kevin.

Dan worked at many locations including Northam, Perth, Albany, Narrogin, Geraldton and finally Cue.

In 1937 Daniel was still employed with the Railways, but was now a railway fireman living in Geraldton.

He was lastly living and working at Cue when he enlisted.

 

 

Following the capitulation of the Allied Forces in Singapore 15 February 1945, Dan was one of thousands of POWs at Selarang, Changi.    He remained here until he was selected with ‘F’ Force to work on the Burma-Thai Railway.

Please read further details about F Force.

This was the last work force to leave Singapore and was made up of POWs including those who were too old, many were entertainers and not soldiers and men who were recovering from illnesses and hospital.  They departed Singapore Railway Station about 16 April 1943 crowded into small trucks for a 4-5 day horror journey to Bampong, the northern most point of the existing railway in Thailand.  From here ‘F’ Force would march for 17-25 days to their designated work camps.  No other Force had marched the entire journey – it was a hellish journey with many deaths before they reached their destination.

Dan was sent to Kami Sonkurai, and six months later he died of malaria and dysentery having surviving a leg amputation by surgeon Dr. Taylor.

Please also read the account by 2/4th’s Wally Holding WX17634 Part one

and Part two

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Kami Songkurai, 299k - Thailand
  • Songkurai 294k - Thailand
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