The Soldier's Details

First Name:
Douglas Norman
Nick Name:
Regimental #:
‘B’ Company, 8 Platoon
Place of Birth:
Leederville, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Norman Charles Russell
Mothers's Name:
Gladys Hamilton Russell (Nee Foote)
Church of England
Pre-war Occupation:
Bank Officer
Thanbyuzayat War Cemetery, Plot A8, Row B, Grave 12, Age 28,
Selarang Canp Changi
‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force, No. 3 Battalion
Camps Burma:
Victoria Point , Khonkan 55km, Victoria Point, Kendau, Thetkaw, Meiloe, Aungganaung
Cause of Death:
Cerebral Malaria
Place of Death:
Aungganaung 105km Camp
Date of Death:
Grave No. 105, Aungganaung 105km Camp

General Description

Doug was one of three sons born to Norman Charles Russell and Gladys Hamilton Foote who married 1914 at Subiaco.  Doug the eldest followed by Ian and Wallace.



Below:  Doug it appears was happy with life at Northam Camp.   He enlisted from Mt. Magnet in 1940 where he was employed with Commonwealth Bank.



Parents of Doug Russell moved to live in Tasmania we believe about early 1930’s.  Norman Charles Russell was employed by the Commonwealth Bank.  We find Doug is residing Langsford Street, Claremont 1936, 1937 up until he enlists 1943  although we know he was transferred to work at the Commonwealth Bank Mt Magnet.There were no other family members at the same address.


Hale School Memorial
Plaque No 103:
Pte Douglas Norman Russell
Hale School 1926-1931)
2/4th Machine Gun Battalion

Doug Russell, or “Rusty”, attended Hale School from Claremont between 1926 and 1931. He represented the school in the 1st XI, swimming and in the 1st XVIII. After leaving school he joined the Commonwealth Bank and was also in the Citizen’s Military Forces at Claremont, training with the machine-gun company.
He enlisted in late 1940 to join the 2/4th Machine-Gun Battalion. He left Australia in January 1942 to serve in Malaya and was captured by the Japanese when Singapore fell on 15 February.
He was eventually sent to work on the Burma-Thailand railway and died there of disease and malnutrition in January 1943. He was 29 years of age.
Dedicated and placed by Haleian Mr Doug Rowe, son of ‘Rusty’ Russell’s best friend at School, Mr Jack Rowe.
Jack was Captain of Hale School in 1931 and donated Pte Russell’s plaque in memory of his close friend.


The 2/4th MGB wish to acknowledge and sincerely thank the generosity of Mr. Doug Rowe who donated the above plaque in memory of Dough Russell.  Doug Rowe is son of Jack Rowe who was a close friend of Doug Russell.


We believe Doug’s mother Gladys Russell died in Tasmania about 1975.  We know Doug’s two brothers Neil and Wallace enlisted with AIF, and survived  their military service however no family member appears to have resided in WA.


R E Carruthers, D N Russell, G H Edwards, J A Taylor (A Coy HQ)  and L H Lee.


Doug Russell enlisted AIF  28 Dec 1940 and later joined 2/4th’s ‘B’ Company 8 Platoon.

Please read about 8 Platoon

Following surrender to Japan and now a POW Doug left with the first work party to leave SingaporeA’ Force Burma Green Force No. 3 Battalion to work on the Burma end of the Burma-Thai Railway.
When the rail link was completed towards end of 1943 the Japanese began moving all POWs working in Burma (and Thailand) to one of several large camps or hospitals in Thailand).  As Doug died at Aungganaung 105Km Hospital Camp, Burma it must be said he was too ill be evacuated south to Thailand and died on 21 Jan 1944 of cerebral malaria aged 28 years.
We have listed the general camps the men worked at commencing with Victoria Point, on south west coast of Burma where the POWs worked on repairing and enlarging facilities at the airfield for several months.  They began work on the Rail line 1 Oct 1942.

Please read about 105km Camp, Burma

Russell was also reported to have been taken to Thanbyuzyat Hospital Camp, Burma 30 Sep 1942.  He was also at Thetkaw 14km Camp RAP 13 Jan 43.

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Aungganaung,105Kilo - Burma
  • Kendau, Kandaw, 4 Kilo - Burma
  • Meilo, 75 Kilo, 340k - Burma
  • Tavoy (Dawei) - river port - Burma
  • Ye - Burma
  • Victoria Point, Kawthoung - Burma. \'A\' Force, Green Force No. 3 Btn
  • Thetkaw 14 Kilo - Burma