The Soldier's Details

Surname:
MacDonald
First Name:
John Kenneth Alexander
Nick Name:
Jack
Rank:
Private
Regimental #:
WX17566
Company:
Headquarters Company, No 3 Platoon.
Enlisted:
5.11.1941
Discharged:
15.07.1946
DOB:
8.02.1913
Place of Birth:
Fremantle, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Alexander MacDonald
Mothers's Name:
Harriet MacDonald (Nee Hughes)
Religion:
Church of Christ
Pre-war Occupation:
Locomotive Driver & Miner
Singapore:
Selarang Camp Changi
Force:
'A' Force Burma, Green Force, No. 3 Battalion
Camps Thailand:
Tamarkan, Nakom Nayok, Bangkok
Camps Burma:
Victoria Point, Tavoy, Ye, Kendau 4.8km, Thetkaw, Meiloe, Augganaung
POW#:
1518
Return Details 1945:
Thailand-Singapore by aircraft, Singapore-Fremantle, HMT Tamaroa.

General Description

MacDonald was with 28th Btn Militia prior to joining 2/4th.
He enlisted AIF 5 Nov 1941 and joined 2/4ths Headquarters Company No. 3 Platoon Administrative as a reinforcement.
John was selected to work on the Burma end of Burma-Thai Railway with ‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force No. 3 Battalion.  The first Force to leave Singapore, 3000 POWs left on three ships from Singapore  on 15 May 1942 to sail to south west Burma.  Green Force landed at Victoria Point for several months to repair and enlarge the aerodrome, then to Tavoy and Ye before making their way to the northern most point of the rail link.  They started working 1 October 1942 at Kendau 4.8km Camp.
Jack MacDonald remained in Burma until 3 January 1944 when he was moved to Tamarkan, Thailand – the Japanese moving all of the POWs from Burma south to one of the large camps in Thailand.
Read John MacDonald being transported to Bangkok.  
He had received bad knee injury at Nacompaton and on  9 Jan 1945 was trucked to Bangkok with Doyle who was seriously ill with bone and joint problems. Both men were recovered from Bangkok at the end of the war.

 

Jack’s parents moved to WA from Victoria. His father Alexander m. Harriett Hughes Warnambook in 1902.  Alexander MacDonald enlisted in WW1 and fought with 16th Battalion.
It was after the war the MacDonald family took up land at the Group Settlement (8) at Pemberton.
John MacDonald married in 1930 to Kathleen Eileen Nyland McNamara at Pemberton.  At that time John was employed as a mill hand.  His parents were residing at No. 8 Group Settlement, Pemberton.
In 1936 John and Kathleen were residing at 20 Vivian St, Mt Brown, Kalgoorlie and John employed as a miner.  After the war, John returned to Kalgoorlie and with his wife Kathleen were residing 18 Vivian Street, with John working as a miner.
John/Jack’s father died in 1937 at Beaconsfield.

 

Jack’s mother Harriett died in 1960.
Jack died 30 May 1951 at Hollywood Hospital aged 44 years.  Too young.  We have to believe his death was related to his POW history and his health.
He is buried at Fremantle Cemetery.

 

 

Kathleen ‘Eileen’ MacDonald thereafter resided Bunbury until her death 20 Aug 1978 aged 77 years.  They had two sons  Dennis and John.

 

 

WX16340 Bob Kenmir enlisted AIF 3 Sep 1941 and later joined 2/4th’s ‘D’ Coy Headquarters under commanding officer Maj Alf Cough.

 

Below:  Less than 12 months later, John’s brother
Robert died in an accident.

 

 

Below:  MacDonald of 16th Battalion.

 

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Nakom Nayok, Nakhon Nayok - Thailand
  • Tamarkan, Tha Makham 56k - Thailand
  • Aungganaung,105Kilo - Burma
  • Kendau, Kandaw, 4 Kilo - Burma
  • Meilo, 75 Kilo, 340k - Burma
  • Victoria Point, Kawthoung - Burma. \'A\' Force, Green Force No. 3 Btn
  • Thetkaw 14 Kilo - Burma
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