Donald Kennedy - Homecoming
Department of Veterans' Affairs
Well, I came back in July of '46. It was strange really. We got off a plane at Mascot, I don't remember going through custom, or immigration, or anything, I just went home and visit Manly.
I think I was a bit of a loose end anyhow. I didn't have any great academic qualifications or anything. The government did not supply anything for Merchant Navy people at that time. So I went back to sea. I spent another four or five years at sea on ships, mainly around Australia over to Fiji, and New Zealand, and around Australian ports.
Then, accidentally again, I left the sea because in 1949, Australia was gripped by a coal miner strike. This last ship I was on was what we call a coal burner, it used to burn coal. They don't have that these days. That ship could not get fuel. It happened to be in Sydney. We had to lay it up. I remember climbing up the funnel and putting a tarpaulin over the funnel and went home and never went back to sea.