The Soldier's Details

Surname:
Bennett
First Name:
Henry Patrick
Nick Name:
Bull, Pat
Rank:
Private
Regimental #:
WX934O
Classification:
Driver
Company:
Battalion Headquarters
Enlisted:
30.10.1940
DOB:
10.07.1914
Place of Birth:
Albany, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Albert Ernest Bennett
Mothers's Name:
Margaret Cicely Bennett
Religion:
Roman Catholic
Pre-war Occupation:
Tractor Driver
Memorial:
Epitaph, Labuan Memorial, Panel 18, Age 30.
Singapore:
Selarang Camp and Barracks Changi
Force:
'E' Force Borneo
POW#:
4/5916 & 1585
Cause of Death:
Heart Paralysis - Cardiac Beri-Beri
Place of Death:
Ranau, first Ranau march.

General Description

 

Above:  Newspaper November 1940.

 

 

Below:  Published in local newspaper 15 February 1941

 

Pat Bennett was the second of 5 sons and one daughter born to Albert Bennett and Margaret (Madge) Jordan who married in Katanning in 1912.  The Bennett family resided in Gnowangerup where Albert was a builder.

Above:  The death of Pat’s brother ‘Snow’ aged 15 years in 1932.

Pat attended Gnowangerup School and later became a motor mechanic.

As a POW at Selarang, Singapore Pat would worked with several work parties on projects for the Japanese.  He was selected with ‘E’ Force which sailed to Borneo leaving Changi 28 March 1943. The 500 Australian and 500 British POW’s who made up E Force,  boarded S.S. DeKlerk arriving at Berhala Island (adjacent to Sandakan Harbour) on 15 April 1943.

At Sandakan they worked constructing an airfield.  The conditions became worse and worse, less food, longer working hours and appalling conditions and their Japanese guards were brutal.  Finally they were taken on the Sandakan-Ranau death march.  Tragically Pat died 1 February 1945 aged 33 years – the Japanese guards had been instructed that no POW was to survive.

Please read further about ‘E’ Force.

Also please read about Sandakan 

and the Death Marches, Borneo

Please read further about the men from the area of Gnowangerup

Bennett Henry Patrick
West Australian Newspapers August 1945

 

 

BENNETT, Private, HENRY PATRICK, WX9340, A.I.F. 2/4 M.G. Bn., Australian Infantry. 15 February 1945. Age 30. Son of Albert Ernest and Margaret Cicely Bennett, of Gnowangerup, Western Australia. Panel 18.

Labuan Memorial, Malaysia.

 

Above:  WA Paybook Photograph which was taken at enlistment.

 

Kings Park Avenue of Honour

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Lintang Officers Camp, Kuching - Sarawak
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