The Soldier's Details

First Name:
John Henry
Nick Name:
Regimental #:
‘A’ Company
Place of Birth:
Collie, Western Australia
Father's Name:
Henry William Schurmann
Mothers's Name:
Margaret Isabel Schurmann
Church of England
Pre-war Occupation:
Selarang Camp Changi
‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force, No. 3 Battalion.
Camps Thailand:
Tamarkan, Chungkai, Linson Wood Camp, Kachu Mountain Camp, Bangkok, Nakom Nayok, Bangkok.
Camps Burma:
Victoria Point, Ye, Kendau 4.8km, Thetkaw, Meiloe, Augganaung
1334 & 12091
Return Details 1945:
Thailand‐Singapore by aircraft, Singapore‐Fremantle, HMT Circassia.

General Description

Jack on leave Melbourne visiting Aunty Flo
Jack with who is believed to be SA Governor and his wife.






















Steve and Jack lend a hand to water train to Darwin











Air Con on train to Darwin


























This NCO was a member of the War Graves Party.

Read Peter Winstanley’s article on ‘Random Recollections’ by John Henry Schurmann, WX5007.

View Peter Winstanley’s video interview of John Schurmann WX5007.

Following the Surrender of Singapore Jack was selected to work on Burma end of Burm-Thai Railway with the first work Force to leave Singapore 14 May 18942 – ‘A’ Force Burma, Green Force No. 3 Battalion sailing to south west coast of Burma to firstly Victoria Point.
Please read the story of ‘A’ Force
Below is from Ye Camp, Burma 1942 where the Japanese were particularly brutal to the Dutch East Indies POWs.
Tom Hampton of 2/4th wrote
“This was a bit too much for
Jack Sherman from ‘A’ Coy. Finding one of the victims he cut the man down and assisted him to his hut. There was no immediate reaction from the Japs, they either didn’t see what happened or chose to ignore it so Jack lived to thwart them another day!”
Keith Griffith of 2/4th wrote
“About 8 Dutch Prisoners were tied around a tree with one long rope looped around each man’s knees with a slip knot round his neck. The tree was infested with large green jumping ants which were swarming over and biting the prisoners. They were continually bashed and as one man collapsed it would tighten the knot on the next man’s neck. A Japanese officer was present.”
The Green Force POWs remained working for about 5 weeks – mostly building a wharf.
Jack was moved to  Kanchaburi at end Dec 1943, mentioned by Keith Mitchell.


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.

Camp Locations:

  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Chungkai, 60k - Thailand
  • Linson Wood Camp, 202k - Thailand
  • Nakom Nayok, Nakhon Nayok - Thailand
  • Tamarkan, Tha Makham 56k - Thailand
  • Aungganaung,105Kilo - Burma
  • Kendau, Kandaw, 4 Kilo - Burma
  • Meilo, 75 Kilo, 340k - Burma
  • Tavoy (Dawei) - river port - Burma
  • Ye - Burma
  • Kachau Mountain Camp - Thailand
  • Victoria Point, Kawthoung - Burma. \'A\' Force, Green Force No. 3 Btn
  • Thetkaw 14 Kilo - Burma