Dorothy Clarke - homefront nurse | Second World War

Running time
1 min 30 sec
Date made
Place made

Dorothy Clarke's unit of nurses were helping with the repatriation efforts at the end of the Second World War. Dorothy reflects on an emotional moment during this time.


LIZ HAYES: I'm Liz Hayes. For International Women's Day 2019, we recognise the role of women in wartime. Women like Dorothy Clark, whose unit of nurses was helping with repatriation efforts at the end of Second World War. Rewarding as the work was, sometimes Dorothy had to fight back the tears.

DOROTHY CLARKE: When the War ended our unit was sent down to Darley outside Melbourne to take the overflow of the prisoners-of-war. Naturally it didn't take us long to see the condition that those young fellows were in. What stands out in my mind was the day I was in the dayroom where we had all the food brought down from the kitchens that we had to distribute around the wards. And this old-looking young man came in and said: "Nurse, could I please have a piece of bread and jam". Well I managed to hold the tears back until he'd gone out, because I thought it was dreadful that our young men had been reduced to that. I still get tears when I think of it.

LIZ HAYES: This International Women's Day we pay homage to our women in wartime and recognise their role during war and peacekeeping efforts.

Was this page helpful?