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NEAVE Donald Roy

Service: Army – 2/21 Battalion
Service number: VX27303
Locality on Enlistment: Wattle Hill, Vic
Duration of Service: 15 Jun 1940 – 20 Jul 1945
Prisoner of War: Yes
Honours: None for display
Date and Place of Birth: 12 Mar 1922 Colac
Parents: David NEAVE and Mary Ann (Annie) TOLEMAN
Spouse: None
School/s: Wattle Hill SS
Occupation: Farmhand
Date and Place of Death: 20 Jul 1945 Ambon POW camp
Place of Burial: Ambon

NOTES: Donald’s older brother Leslie served in the 2/8 Australian Field Company in Greece and Crete. He was also a Prisoner of war and died in August of 1941. During this time, Donald’s 2/21 Battalion was in Darwin, moving to Ambon in December 1941. Scott, the commanding officer, despaired at their conditions – difficult communication with the Dutch, transport, air and artillery support, reserves and rations were limited, and they had a small troop compared with the Japanese. Scott was replaced. By January 31st the Dutch had surrendered and the 2/21st could no longer hold back the Japanese. Many Australians were massacred and those remaining, including Donald, were imprisoned. Conditions on Ambon were harsh and they had limited medical support. Donald died just 2 months before surrender. Ref: Australian War Memorial site.