The Soldier's Details

First Name:
Jack Clifford
Nick Name:
Black Jack
Corporal (Promoted on 11.2.1942)
Regimental #:
‘A’ Company
Place of Birth:
Mt Hawthorn, Western Australia
Father's Name:
David Alexander Ewen
Mothers's Name:
Amelia Maud Ewen
Church of England
Pre-war Occupation:
Selarang Camp Changi; Johore Bahru; Adam Park; Selarang Barracks Changi / Selarang Barracks Changi; Kranji Hospital Camp Woodlands; X8 Party; Changi Gaol Camp (cook house)
‘F’ Force Thailand
Camps Thailand:
Sonkurai (cook house), Shimo Sonkurai, Kami Sonkurai, Konkoita
Return Details 1945:
Singapore‐Darwin-Melboume, 1st Netherlands Military Hospital Ship, Oranje; Melbourne 115(H)MH; Melbourne-Perth by troop train to 110(P)MH

General Description

Tea break before Darwin Oct 41 Standing L-R Fitzgerald, Minchin, Golden, Short, Vidler, ? , Jamieson, Cpl Lee, ?, ? , Ewen. Kneeling L-R Cpl Townsend, Gregory and RK O’Leary. Photo taken by Major Saggers.











‘Black Jack’ as he was often known as, enlisted AIF Oct 1940 and later joined 2/4th’s ‘A’ Coy 6 Platoon under CO Lt John Morrison.  He was promoted to Corporal 11 Feb 1942.
During fighting in Singapore Jack was wounded at Buona Vista on the last day of fighting – 15 February 1942.  He received GSW to his lower left leg and left shoulder admitted to 2/9th Field Ambulance then transferred to AGH at St Patrick’s School on 17 Feb and then to AGH Roberts Barracks at Changi.   He was discharged to his unit 5 May 1942.
Following Allied Surrender at Singapore Jack was sent to Selarang Camp Changi.  He was then sent out on work parties to Johore Bahru and Adam Park.
He was entrained from Singapore to Thailand to work on the Burma-Thai Railway with ‘F’ Force in 1943.   This Force endured a high death rate and horrific conditions and tropical illnesses.  They arrived in the monsoon season and their camp was muddy and continually wet with rations held by muddy roads.

Please read about ‘F’ Force Thailand

Below:  48 men of 2/4th who left Singapore.  List compiled by Harold Cowie.


Jack was a cook at Songkurai Camp – a life-saving job.
Then it was onto Shimo Songkurai, Cami Songkurai, Konkoita before being sent back to Kanchanaburi at the end of 1943.  All the POWs in Burma were sent south to one of several large camps or hospitals.  POWs were entrained to Singapore returning to Changi.
Jack was sent on a work party in Singapore in 1945  –
X8 Party.  He also sought a job as a cook at Changi.
He was recovered from Changi at the end of the war.
Black Jack was an unforgettable big man with a big character!





Dallas Longhi (nee Ewen) Joe Longhi, Max Ewen


1987 Anniversary

Jack Ewen, Ettie & Doug Hampton

Jack passed away 24 March 2001.
































Camp Locations:

  • Changi Gaol Camp - Singapore
  • Johore Bahru, - Malaysia
  • Kranji Camp Woodlands - Singapore
  • Selarang Barracks Changi - Singapore
  • Selarang Camp Changi - Singapore
  • Kami Songkurai, 299k - Thailand
  • Songkurai 294k - Thailand
  • Shimo Sonkurai, 288k - Thailand
  • Konkoita (Brigade or Cholera Camp) - Thailand