lae war cemetery

LAE WAR CEMETERY (PAPUA NEW GUINEA)
The Battle of Mogadishu
By Matt Eversmann
The White Mouse
By Nancy Wake
LAE WAR CEMETERY (PAPUA NEW GUINEA)
In the early months of 1942, Japan enjoyed a crushing superiority in the air, and it was Lae and its neighbouring airfields that were the objects of the first Japanese attack on New Guinea. Lae and Salamaua were bombed on 21 January 1942 by 100 planes, but the land forces did not enter the territory until 7 March, when 3,000 Japanese landed at Lae. There were landings too at Salamaua, followed on 21 July by further landings at Buna and Gona on the east coast in preparation for a drive through the Owen Stanley Mountains across the Papuan peninsula to Port Moresby. The vital stage of the New Guinea campaign dates from that time. Lae became one of the bases from which the southward drive was launched and maintained until it was stopped at Ioribaiwa Ridge, a point within 60 kilometres of Port Moresby.

LAE WAR CEMETERY was commenced in 1944 by the Australian Army Graves Service and handed over to the Commission in 1947. It contains the graves of men who lost their lives during the New Guinea campaign whose graves were brought here from the temporary military cemeteries in areas where the fighting took place. The Indian casualties were soldiers of the army of undivided India who had been taken prisoner during the fighting in Malaya and Hong Kong. The great majority of the unidentified were recovered between But airfield and Wewak, where they had died while employed in working parties. Of the two men belonging to the army of the United Kingdom, one was attached to 2/9th Australian Infantry Battalion and the other was a member of the Hong Kong-Singapore Royal Artillery. The naval casualties were killed, or died of injuries received, on H.M. Ships King George V, Glenearn and Empire Arquebus, and the four men of the Merchant Navy were killed when the S.S. Gorgon was bombed and damaged in Milne Bay in April 1943.

The cemetery contains 2,818 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War, 444 of them unidentified. It was unveiled by the Governor-General of Australia, Field Marshal Slim, on 21 October 1953.

Prior to the First World War, north-eastern New Guinea and certain adjacent islands were German possessions, and were occupied by Australian Forces on 12 September 1914. Several cemeteries in New Guinea contain the graves of men who died during that war. There is one such grave in Lae War Cemetery, brought in from a burial ground where permanent maintenance could not be assured.

The LAE MEMORIAL, which stands in the cemetery, commemorates more than 300 officers and men of the Australian Army, the Australian Merchant Navy and the Royal Australian Air Force who lost their lives in these operations and have no known grave. Casualties of the Royal Australian Navy who lost their lives in the south-western Pacific region, and have no known grave but the sea, are commemorated on Plymouth Naval Memorial in England along with many of their comrades of the Royal Navy and of other Commonwealth Naval Forces.
  1. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Hoad, Geoffrey Gordon

    SURNAME Hoad FORENAME Geoffrey Gordon UNIT 2/4 Commando Squadron RANK Lieutenant NUMBER SX13297 DATE OF DEATH 23rd December 1943 AGE 22 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea AA.C.9 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 18.12.1921 Victor Harbour,South Australia son of Harry...
  2. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Stephenson, Peter Owen Ivaugh

    SURNAME Stephenson FORENAME Peter Owen Ivaugh UNIT 2/9 Commando Squadron RANK Trooper NUMBER QX53988 DATE OF DEATH 6th March 1945 AGE 20 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea DD.D.2 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 4.2.1925 Brisbane,Queensland son of Robert Montserrat...
  3. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Cater, Rex Bowring

    SURNAME Cater FORENAME Rex Bowring UNIT 2/10 Commando Squadron RANK Lieutenant NUMBER NX13276 DATE OF DEATH 20th February 1945 AGE 28 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea HH.D.5 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 23.7.1916 Wellington,New South Wales son of Mars Gerald...
  4. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Martin, Gordon John

    SURNAME Martin FORENAME Gordon John UNIT 2/10 Commando Squadron (B Troop) RANK Lieutenant NUMBER VX64564 DATE OF DEATH 25th June 1945 AGE 32 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea GG.D.12 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 7.5.1913 Melbourne,Victoria son of Gordon Francis...
  5. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS McFarlane, Roy Francis

    SURNAME McFarlane FORENAME Roy Francis UNIT 2/7 Commando Squadron RANK Corporal NUMBER NX136164 DATE OF DEATH 11th May 1945 AGE 22 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea HH.B.12 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 24.8.1922 Wyong,New South Wales son of Francis Patrick and...
  6. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Hobson, Keven Gordon

    SURNAME Hobson FORENAME Keven Gordon UNIT 2/10 Commando Squadron RANK Trooper NUMBER NX4595 DATE OF DEATH 13th March 1945 AGE 27 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea TT.C.7 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 10.2.1918 Young,New South Wales son of Henry Thomas and Mary...
  7. COASTWATCHERS Vial, Leigh Grant

    SURNAME Vial FORENAME Leigh Grant UNIT R.A.A.F. (coastwatcher and intelligence officer) RANK Flight Lieutenant NUMBER 253939 DATE OF DEATH 30th April 1943 AGE 34 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea D.D.9 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born 28.2.1909 son of Stanley...
  8. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Brown, William Thomas

    SURNAME Brown FORENAME William Thomas UNIT 2/10 Commando Squadron RANK Sergeant NUMBER WX1159 DATE OF DEATH 12th March 1945 AGE 30 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea TT.C.5 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of William and Helen Brown KIA New Guinea
  9. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Wilson, Trevor Charles

    SURNAME Wilson FORENAME Trevor Charles UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Private NUMBER NX48223 DATE OF DEATH 9th December 1942 AGE 20 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea K.B.4 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of John Alexander and Maude Wilson,Orange,New South WAles...
  10. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS McCallum, Malcolm Johnston

    SURNAME McCallum FORENAME Malcolm Johnston UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Staff Sergeant NUMBER QX7301 DATE OF DEATH 5th July 1942 AGE 33 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.B.16 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Malcolm McLean and Mary Ann...
  11. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Hobbs, Lyle Edwin Robert

    SURNAME Hobbs FORENAME Lyle Edwin Robert UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Private NUMBER VX78859 DATE OF DEATH 3rd February 1943 AGE 19 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.D.6 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Thomas Edwin and Azelia Rose Hobbs,Pascoe...
  12. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Hames, Norman William

    SURNAME Hames FORENAME Norman William UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Private NUMBER WX17445 DATE OF DEATH 24th January 1943 AGE 32 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea B.C.4 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Arthur Harold Garner and Jane Ann Hames,Victoria...
  13. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Drysdale, William

    SURNAME Drysdale FORENAME William UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Lieutenant NUMBER VX39455 DATE OF DEATH 1st October 1942 AGE 21 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea S.A.10 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of John and Kathleen Drysdale,Sandringham,Victoria KIA Papua
  14. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Crellin, Archie Henry

    SURNAME Crellin FORENAME Archie Henry UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Corporal NUMBER WX20131 DATE OF DEATH 3rd July 1942 AGE 25 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea H.B.9 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Charles Henry and Elsie Deborah Crellin,Coolgardie,Western...
  15. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Creek, David Leslie

    SURNAME Creek FORENAME David Leslie UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Private NUMBER VX76789 DATE OF DEATH 29th May 1942 AGE 26 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.D.15 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Mrs K.R. Creek,Collingwood,Victoria accidentally killed New Guinea
  16. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Bruford, Alexander Peter Romilly

    SURNAME Bruford FORENAME Alexander Peter Romilly UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Lance Corporal NUMBER VX60359 DATE OF DEATH 24th July 1942 AGE 19 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.D.12 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Romilly Alexander and Mable Bruford died...
  17. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Bullock, William Wathen

    SURNAME Bullock FORENAME William Wathen UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Lieutenant NUMBER VX62863 DATE OF DEATH 28th January 1943 AGE 30 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.A.14 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of Frank Garnet and Elsie Kezia Bullock husband of...
  18. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Blezard, Jack Walton Whidburn

    SURNAME Blezard FORENAME Jack Walton Whidburn UNIT 2/5 Independent Company RANK Lieutenant NUMBER VX114273 DATE OF DEATH 3rd February 1943 AGE 36 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea G.A.7 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION son of LtCol Ivie and Elizabeth Blezard husband of...
  19. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Wright, Victor John (Vic)

    SURNAME Wright FORENAME Victor John (Vic) UNIT 2/3 Independent Company RANK Private NUMBER VX122011 DATE OF DEATH 15th July 1943 AGE 23 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea R.D.13 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born Apollo Bay,Victoria son of Fredrick John and Trevena...
  20. AUSTRALIAN COMMANDOS Williams, Ralph Potts

    SURNAME Williams FORENAME Ralph Potts UNIT 2/3 Independent Company RANK Lance Corporal NUMBER SX1024 DATE OF DEATH 9th March 1943 AGE 22 GRAVESITE Lae War Cemetery,Papua New Guinea J.A.15 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION born Burra,South Australia son of Frederick Caleb and Mary...
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