Ronald Arthur (Ron) PAGE

Poppy

PAGE, Ronald Arthur

Service Number: WX4934
Enlisted: 23 July 1940
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 2nd/4th Machine Gun Battalion
Born: Athelstone, South Australia, 28 December 1917
Home Town: Welshpool, Canning, Western Australia
Schooling: Not yet discovered
Occupation: Labourer
Died: Illness, Borneo, 17 February 1945, aged 27 years
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
Memorials: Australian War Memorial Roll of Honour, Ballarat Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial, Boyup Brook Sandakan Prisoner of War Memorial, Cannington Welshpool District Roll of Honor
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World War 2 Service

23 Jul 1940: Involvement Private, SN WX4934
23 Jul 1940: Enlisted Claremont, WA
23 Jul 1940: Enlisted Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, SN WX4934
4 Nov 1940: Transferred Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, 2nd/4th Machine Gun Battalion
30 Dec 1941: Embarked Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, SN WX4934, 2nd/4th Machine Gun Battalion, ex Darwin to Singapore via Batavia
15 Apr 1942: Imprisoned Reported Battle Casualty - conformed PoW 12 April 1943
7 Jul 1942: Embarked Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, SN WX4934, 2nd/4th Machine Gun Battalion, As a Japanese PoW, Ron was transported from Changi on board the Ubi Moru to Sandakan Harbor

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Biography contributed by Chris Buckley

Born is South Australia, Ron was one of nine children of Albert (Bert) Page (b1882 in Oaklands, South Australia) and Bessie Lloyd Kenack (b1884 in Edwardstown, South Australia). Bert (a Labourer) and Bessie married in Adelaide in 1912 and by 1920 had moved with their children to Western Australia. The family settled in Welshpool where Bert worked as a Labourer and Motor Driver. He and Bessie divorced in 1948.

Ron - a member of The Grand United Order of Free Gardeners, Wattle Branch Victoria Park (a fraternal lodge for like minded men focused on mutual aid, benevolence and community service - was working as a Labourer in Welshpool in July 1940 when he enlisted in the Australian Army (Private; Service No:WX4939. Initially posted to 3 Depot Battalion Northam, Ron transferred to 2/4 Machine Gun Battalion in November 1940. He was in Darwin in December 1941 when he embarked for Singapore. Initially reported as a Battle Casualty - Missing in Malaya on 15 April 1942, Ron was confirmed a Japanese PoW (No:1127) on 12 April 1943. Held at Selarang Camp, Ron volunteered to leave Singapore with 'B' Force Borneo, and in July 1942 he was transported from Changi on board the Ubi Maru to Sandakan Harbor. From Sandakan he was part of the First March to Ranau No 1 Camp where he died on 17 February 1945. 

On Saturday 24 February 1945, Ron's mother Bessie wrote ' All honour to General MacArthur and his troops for their great achievement and may they still have success. But please do not forget the Australian boys who are making it possible for them to do all these great things. I am the mother of five of them who have done and are still doing their part in helping the Americans to go onward. One has given his life. Bessie L Page (Opinion; p2). Bessie had five sons serving in WWII - Ronald Arthur, Keith Aubrey, Norman Ian, Ernest Lincoln and Douglas Herbert.

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