Francis Adrian Roberts - Instinct and situational awareness

Running time
1 min 17 sec

Department of Veterans' Affairs


Long Tan started for me the night before. We'd been shelled and mortared the night before, but it didn't fall on our position. The artillery got a bit, the engineers.

A friend of mine lost his leg. He changed bed places, he was an engineer, he changed bed places and his mate would have lost his head but because they'd reversed their beds, he lost his leg.

Anyway, the next day, I mean there was a bit of running around but not overtly. We went off to see Little Patti. My driver, Piggy O'Rourke, is still the oldest 60s rocker I have ever come across and he took her, after the concert, took her for a ride up to 5RAR and in the middle of all this we could hear the artillery going, shooting shells over our heads and got more and more until I realised it was well over a battery's fire.

It was in fact regiment fire and got back to the squadron, I went under the shower and a runner came over to me to say, "The Major wants you with his map."

And that was the sort of signal that we were off again to play rescuers or silly buggers or whatever.

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