The Soldier's Details

Surname:
Cody
First Name:
Leslie
Nick Name:
Les
Rank:
Staff Sergeant (Promoted 11.2.1942)
Regimental #:
WX9555
Company:
‘D’ Company Headquarters (transferred from No. 13 Platoon)
Enlisted:
4.12.1940
Discharged:
1.05.1946
DOB:
12.12.1918
Place of Birth:
Boulder, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Richard Cody
Mothers's Name:
Mabel Cody
Religion:
Roman Catholic
Pre-war Occupation:
Clerk
Singapore:
Selarang Camp Changi
Force:
‘ A’ Force Burma, Green Force, No. 3 Battalion
Camps Thailand:
Tamarkan Hospital Camp No. 2 (4.4.1944), Chungkai, Kachu Mountain Camp, Nakom Nayok, Lopburi (see Danny Bevis Diary)
Camps Burma:
Reptu 30km and Khonkan 55km Hospital Camps, Victoria Point, Tavoy, Ye, Thanbuzayat, 4.8km, 14km, 75km, 105km
POW#:
1310
Return Details 1945:
Thailand‐Singapore by aircraft, Singapore‐Fremantle, HMT Circassia.

General Description

Les was wounded at Buona Vista during fighting of 15 February 1942.  Admitted to Field Ambulance with shrapnel would to his right thigh he was transferred to 13 AGH 16 February 1942.

He was discharged to his Unit on 28 March 1942.

This NCO was an original member of No. 13 Platoon  until his appointment as ‘D’ Company C.Q.M.S.

After the war Cody joined the Commonwealth War Graves Party under the command of Captain J. Leemon.

c. October 1945. Group portrait of three "A" Force members of the War Graves Commission survey party whose task was to locate POW cemeteries and grave sites along the Burma-Thailand railway. They also took the opportunity to recover equipment and documents which had been secretly buried, under instructions from senior POW officers, in the graves of deceased POWs. Left to Right; standing; Sergeant (Sgt) Jack Sherman, 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion, Acting Warrant Officer Class 2 Les Cody, 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion; seated: Sgt T. Lee, B Division Provost Company.
c. October 1945. Group portrait of three “A” Force members of the War Graves Commission survey party whose task was to locate POW cemeteries and grave sites along the Burma-Thailand railway. They also took the opportunity to recover equipment and documents which had been secretly buried, under instructions from senior POW officers, in the graves of deceased POWs. Left to Right; standing; Sergeant (Sgt) Jack Sherman, 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion, Acting Warrant Officer Class 2 Les Cody, 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion; seated: Sgt T. Lee, B Division Provost Company.

 

Read the story of Norman Fraser

 

Fairbridge 2001
Fairbridge 2001

 

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

 

Les Cody is author of “Ghosts in Khaki” – The History of the 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion which was published in 1997.

An excellent book written by a former POW who was there!

Les includes the personalities of so many men, the Aussie larrikins; and personalises stories.

This book is the only published book about 2/4th, other than Murray Ewen’s detailed “Colour Patch”.

Les was an active member of 2/4th MG Battalion Ex-Members Assoc and with his wife attended social events.

He is represented every year by several grandchildren at the Anzac Day March.

 

Ron Badock, Dick Ridgwell & John Gilmour with grandsons of Les Cody
Ron Badock, Dick Ridgwell & John Gilmour with grandsons of Les Cody

 

Les passed away aged 83yrs, February 4 2002, at Karrinyup, WA.

 

Listen to the oral history interview of Les recorded in Singapore March 2000

 

Les Cody, The West 02 25 2002
Les Cody, The West 02 25 2002

 

Les was selected in Singapore to work on the Burma end of the Railway with ‘A’ Force Burma Green Force No. 3 Battalion.    The 3,000 men of ‘A’ Force sailed from Singapore to Burma.  Victoria Point was the first work camp where they spent months repairing and improving the airfield.  The POWs then went to Tavoy and Ye before heading to Thanbyuzat and to the head of the railway to commence work.   Their first camp was Kendau 4.8 km, Thetkaw 14km, Meiloe 75km, Aungganaung 105km before being evacuated sick to Thanbyuzat on 2 May 1943 from Meiloe.  From Thanbyuzat he was evacuated to 8km Wegale due to Allied bombing of the Thanbyuzat hospital.

Les also spent time sick at 30km Reptu hospital Camp (from where he was sent to Ankannan Camp on 11 Sept 1943) and Khonkan 55 km hospital Camp.

He was returned to 105km Aungganaung Camp before all the POWs were evacuated  south to Thailand when the railway was completed.  He was hospitalised at Tamarkan 4 April 1944.

Having improved a little he was then sent to Chungkai from where he was selected in early 1945 with a work party to go to Kachu Mountain Camp.  From here he was sent to Nakom Nayok and Lopburi Camps before the war ended.

 

 

 

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Chungkai, 60k - Thailand
  • Lopburi - Thailand
  • Nakom Nayok, Nakhon Nayok - Thailand
  • Tamarkan, Tha Makham 56k - Thailand
  • Aungganaung,105Kilo - Burma
  • Kendau, Kandaw, 4 Kilo - Burma
  • Khonkan, 55Kilo Hospital 360k - Burma
  • Meilo, 75 Kilo, 340k - Burma
  • Reptu, Retphaw, 30Kilo 385k - Burma
  • Tavoy (Dawei) - river port - Burma
  • Thanbyuzayat, 415k - Burma
  • Ye - Burma
  • Kachau Mountain Camp - Thailand
  • Victoria Point, Kawthoung - Burma. \'A\' Force, Green Force No. 3 Btn
  • Thetkaw 14 Kilo - Burma
Back