The Soldier's Details

Surname:
McDonald
First Name:
Clarence John
Nick Name:
CJ
Rank:
Lance Corporal
Regimental #:
WX8620
Company:
'A' Company
Enlisted:
18.10.1940
Discharged:
9.01.1946
DOB:
29.11.1916
Place of Birth:
Geraldton, Western Australia
Father's Name:
William Donald McDonald
Mothers's Name:
Beatrice Maude McDonald
Religion:
Church of England
Pre-war Occupation:
Railway Porter
Singapore:
Selarang Camp & Barracks Changi
Force:
'D' Force Thalland, S Battalion
Camps Thailand:
Kanu II, Hintok Road Camp, Hintok River Camp, Kinsaiyok, Konkoita, Tarsau (hospital), Tamuang, Tamarkan, Chungkai, Petchaburi, Kachu Mountain Camp, Lopburi, Nakom Nayok, Bangkok.
POW#:
4/4536, 8470
Return Details 1945:
Thailand-Singapore by aircraft, Singapore-Fremantle, HMT Tamaroa.

General Description

McDonald Clarrie
McDonald Clarrie

 

 

Clarrie McDonald
Clarrie McDonald
Karrakatta Cemetery
Karrakatta Cemetery

 

Murray L Raynor L Hughes R McDonald C McGhee A, Noalunga Beach SA
Murray L Raynor L Hughes R McDonald C McGhee A, Noalunga Beach SA

 

Hughes R Elliott J McDonald C Raynor L, Woodside SA
Hughes R Elliott J McDonald C Raynor L, Woodside SA

 

L-R Jim Gilmour, "Widgee" Holst, "Blue" McMahon, Bert Norton, Jim Elliott, Clarrie McDonald. Kneeling - Jim Dore
L-R Jim Gilmour, “Widgee” Holst, “Blue” McMahon, Bert Norton, Jim Elliott, Clarrie McDonald. Kneeling – Jim Dore

 

McDonald C Hughes R, Woodside SA
McDonald C Hughes R, Woodside SA

 

Left to right - Bert Norton, Jim Dore, Johnny Gilmour, Clarrie McDonald
Left to right – Bert Norton, Jim Dore, Johnny Gilmour, Clarrie McDonald
"A new Friend" William Short, C. McDonald, - Thompson (front), Unknown, - Davey. E 'Snow' Watt.
“A new Friend” William Short, C. McDonald, – Thompson (front), Unknown,
– Davey. E ‘Snow’ Watt.

 

Back: L-R Clarrie McDonald, Joe Pearce, George Neville, R. Anderson, ?, Ralph Williams, ? Front: L-R Clive (Potty) White, Charles Fielder, Jim Basel, Reg Stewart, Roy Matthews, Pommie Para, Sid Webb, N. Simmonds

Nakom Nayok     Back: L-R Clarrie McDonald, Joe Pearce, George Neville, R. Anderson, ?, Ralph Williams, ?

Front: L-R Clive (Potty) White, Charles Fielder, Jim Basell, Reg Stewart, Roy Matthews, Pommie Para, Sid Webb, N. Simmonds

The above photograph was taken in Thailand after the war had finished.  They had been freed, clothed and fed and waiting to return to Australia!  They all look happy but several appear to be quite gaunt and probably unwell. Note several blokes are wearing Jap shoes/boots with separated toes.  However none of them would have had shoes such as they are wearing whilst POWs and working for Japanese – most had no footwear.

Read about Clarrie’s effort to visit home from ‘Aquitania’ on the night of 15 January 1942.

Clarrie’s older brother Keith Kitchener known as KK and Geoff together enlisted 18 October 1940.  Keith was WX8621 and Clarrie WX8620.  Jim Dore was WX8617, Jim Elliott was WX8619, John Gilmour WX8622 and brother Jim Gilmour WX8623.  The six mates were in ‘A’ Coy. (Jim Dore’s brother was probably WX8618 – however he was not selected to continue with the 2/4th whilst at Woodside, SA)

The mates remained together going to Thailand to the railway  (except John Gilmour who had been ill and hospitalised at Changi and then went to Japan with ‘J’ Force) with ‘D’ Force S Battalion where KK McDonald died of Cholera at Kanyu 2 in November 1943 aged 25.  KK was working hammer and tap with Cowboy Matthews WX17000 when he collapsed and was diagnosed immediately with cholera and taken to hospital camp and later died.

The sudden death of his brother KK would have been terrible for the close group of mates and quite unbearable for Clarrie and returning home without his brother would have been difficult.

 

 

In about 1946  Clarrie married Ailsa Meston and the couple had a family of 3 or 4 children.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tragically Clarrie died unexpectedly in 1963 aged 46 years.

 

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Chungkai, 60k - Thailand
  • Hintok, 154k - Thailand
  • Hintok River Camp, 158k - Thailand
  • Kanu II, 152.30k - Thailand
  • Kinsaiyok Main, 170.2k - Thailand
  • Lopburi - Thailand
  • Nakom Nayok, Nakhon Nayok - Thailand
  • Petchaburi - Thailand
  • Tamarkan, Tha Makham 56k - Thailand
  • Tamuang, Tha Muang 39k - Thailand
  • Tarsau, Tha Sao 125k - Thailand
  • Kachau Mountain Camp - Thailand
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