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  • Arnold Lisle Francis

    Rob Crossing
    • Regimental Number: QX9690

    Arnold joined the unit on Timor as a Sapper from the 2/11 Field Company, Royal Aust Engineers, after the fall of Koepang, in about March 1942. After the campaign on Timor, he embarked with the unit for Australia aboard the Royal Dutch destroyer “Tjerk Hiddes” on either 11 Dec 1942 or 16 Dec 1942, as the embarkation rolls do not differentiate. 

    He was discharged on 18 Jan 1946.


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    Thank you for the creation of this database and the addition of my uncle Arn's record to it. Just 5 days ago I was visiting Wilson's Promontory and discovered the Commando Memorial at Tidal River so to find this record is timely and something of a coincidence.

    I recently applied to NAA to have his service record digitised and that file is now publicly available.

    Arn wrote a short account of his Timor experience which he called Sparrows in Timor which we have been able to cross reference to other books to flesh out his story a little more. He was WIA (about August I think) when he encountered a Jap officer. Most poignantly he records the death of "my best mate" Les Moule just before they were due to be evacuated.

    After the war he worked on the hydro project in Tasmania, the Snowy River scheme tunnels and with Mt Isa Mines putting his explosives knowledge to good use. A sporting facility in Mt Isa has been named in his honour - would be lawn bowls or cricket I think.

    He had engaging personality and was a favourite uncle to many of my cousins.


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