John Harrison: Anzac Day 2020

Running time
1 min 30 sec
Date made
Place made
Hear from veterans, their loved ones and those on the home front about their most unforgettable memories of wartime.


Intro: Anzac Day 2020, commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the end of the Second World War.

Mat McLachlan: I'm Mat McLachlan. On Anzac Day, we remember all Australians who have served our country. The Second World War affected everyone in Australia – even children. Kids were able to help with certain duties. John Harrison remembered only too well his school duties in regional Narrogin in Western Australia.

John Harrison: We had what was known as the Volunteer Air Observer Corps - our local school became a VAOC post. And every time an aeroplane flew over during the day, we'd all rush out and try and find it and then identify various features of the plane, like the different types of wings – whether it was a single wing or a monoplane or a dual wing. Or what sort of tail it had. How many engines, and whether they were inline or radial.

And the older kids in the class were each given a particular feature to look for. I was the wing man. I had to decide whether it was a monoplane or a biplane, anhedral or dihedral – I even remember the expressions! Then the school master would hop on the phone and ring up a central agency in the town of Narrogin and report, because I suppose this was all aimed at whether it was an enemy aircraft or a friendly one. They were some of the sort of things we got engaged in.

Outro: Anzac Day 2020, remembering all Australians who served our country. Lest we forget.

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