Paul Gemmell: 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. You would think that three and a half years in a Japanese prisoner of war camp during the Second World War could leave some of our young men almost devoid of emotion. But Paul Gemmell proved otherwise, as he remembered those first precious days of freedom.

Paul Gemmell: The feeling was unbelievable that, the heartfelt relief, the sort of: 'Thank God, we can go home' – something that you couldn't even begin to describe.

We were moved to a small hospital camp at Kranji, and I heard for the first time in probably three-and-a-half years, a baby cry. Hearing this baby cry was the most unbelievable happening you could imagine – and there were blokes in tears all around me … and I was myself – to hear this wonderful sound of life that we hadn't heard for years and years.

And then the music, the modern music: Lili Marlene and Don't Fence Me In. That modern music was something we didn't even know existed, and it sounded, the first time we heard it, absolutely unbelievable.

Outro: ANZAC Day 2020. Remembering all Australians who served our county. Lest we forget.

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