Hugh Vincent CLARKE

CLARKE, Hugh Vincent

Service Number: QX17307
Enlisted: 25 July 1940, Kelvin Grove, Queensland
Last Rank: Bombardier
Last Unit: 2nd/10th Field Regiment
Born: Brisbane, Queensland, 1 July 1919
Home Town: Brisbane, Brisbane, Queensland
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: QLD Main Roads Commission as a Cadet Surveyor
Died: Natural Causes, Canberrra, ACT, 28 November 1996, aged 77 years
Cemetery: Gungahlin Cemetery, ACT
Portion 2 (Ex Service section); Section 6, Grave 11.
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World War 2 Service

25 Jul 1940: Involvement Private, SN QX17307, 8th Division Ammunition Sub-Park, Enlistment/Embarkation WW2
25 Jul 1940: Enlisted Kelvin Grove, Queensland
21 Feb 1941: Embarked
7 Dec 1941: Involvement Bombardier, SN QX17307, 2nd/10th Field Regiment, Malaya/Singapore
15 Feb 1942: Involvement Bombardier, SN QX17307, 2nd/10th Field Regiment, Prisoners of War
22 Nov 1945: Discharged

Help us honour Hugh Vincent Clarke's service by contributing information, stories, and images so that they can be preserved for future generations.


Father Patrick John Clarke and Mother Katherine Clarke (nee _____),
living at 61 Fifth Avenue, Wilston, Brisbane, Queensland.

Eldest of three brothers.

Educated in Toowoomba and Brisbane.

Next of kin in service (brothers):
23548      Sergeant (Sgt) Patrick Maurice Clarke
                b. 26/1/1921 Brisbane, QLD
                served in 24 Squadron at Rabaul
                managed to evade capture by the invading Japanese
                and make his way back to New Guinea.

414467    Flight Sergeant Daniel Joseph Clarke
                b. 12/8/1922 Brisbane, QLD
                2/6/1943  killed in a flying accident at 17 Advanced Flying Unit, RAF.
                buried in:  St Mary's Church & Cemetery, Watton, Norfolk, England

Described on enlisting as 20 years old; single; 5' 5" tall; grey eyes; medium complexion;
dark brown hair;

16/7/1940      completed medical - fit for service

25/7/1940      enlisted at Kelvin Grove, Brisbane, QLD.

late 1940        embarked from Brisbane with the 8th Division for Malaya (via Sydney)

2/2/1941        embarked from Sydney, NSW
                     as a Private with the 2nd/10th Field Regiment, 8th Division
18/2/1941      disembarked into Singapore

15/2/1942      captured by the Japanese with the fall of Singapore, a POW at Nakama

17/2/1942 - 20/3/1942    held at Changi Prison Camp
20/3/1942 - 24/12/1942  held at Great World Prison Camp, Singapore
24/12/1942 - 17/3/1943  held at Changi Prison Camp

He was sent from Changi to work as a prisoner on the Burma-Thailand Railway in the first group
that began work at the notorious Hellfire Pass in Thailand on Anzac Day 1943.

22/3/1943 - 22/6/1944    held at various Prison Camps in Thailand
                                    (Kenyou 3, Tarsea, Hintock, Tamuan, Wompo etc)
30/6/1944 - 8/9/1944     on board ship on route to Japan

In 1944 he was sent to Japan to work as a prisoner in the shipyard at Nagasaki, then at a coal mine at Fukuoka.

8/9/1944 - May 1945      held at Nagasaki Prison Camp, Japan

Nov 1944       suffered from Malaria

May 1945 - Hune 1945    held at Nakarma Prison Camp, Japan

June 1945 - 9/9/1945      held at Fukuoka No. 1 Prison Camp, Japan

10/9/1945       recovered from the Japanese at Fukuoka, Japan

Oct 1945         boarded HMS Formidable at Nagasaki, for return home to Australia
                      as a Bombardier in 2/10th Field Regiment
13/10/1945     disembarked into Sydney, NSW

22/11/1945      discharged from service in AIF WWII

In late 1946 he joined the Survey Branch of the Department of the Interior, Canberra.

1957            appointed Information and Publicity Officer, Department of Territories. 

1961            married Patricia Clarke (nee _____)

1967-74       He was Director of Information and Publicity Branch, Department of Territories and

1974-77       Director of Public Relations Branch, Department of Aboriginal Affairs.

During this career he spent a great deal of time in the Northern Territory, Papua New Guinea and
other territories and in Japan and Europe promoting Papua New Guinea.

He is the author of many hundreds of short stories and articles and "13" books, including several
about his experiences as a prisoner of war of the Japanese.

He also wrote on the Japanese outbreak at Cowra; the Japanese raid on Sydney Harbour, the
Great Depression and Northern Territory life.  

Hugh always proudly maintained that the turning point in recovering from his ordeal had been his
marriage in 1961 to Patricia, a journalist who in retirement has also become a much-published author.

Patricia survives him, along with four sons and a daughter
Sons        David Clarke; Brian Clarke; John Clarke; Justin Clarke
Daughter  Brigid Clarke

28/11/1996     Hugh Clarke passed away

buried in:        Gungahlin Cemetery, ACT
                      Portion 2 (Ex Service section); Section 6, Grave 11.

Sourced and submitted by Julianne T Ryan.  18/5/2015.  Lest we forget.