This was a very special day.
we were up early to get out Sandakan Memorial Park for the service at 7am.the park and the service honour the 2500 australian and british troops whodied in the death marches ,and the local people who were killed for helping them,and all who died in borneo in ww2.certainly a brutal story.we had seen the lovely sandakan memorial at kundasang,near mt kinabalu,where the marches started.there we saw a videoabout sandakan.in it was an australian author called lynette silver who wrote"Sandakan-a conspiracy of silence"this helped reveal sandakan horror.she then wrote"blood brothers=sabah and australia 1942-1945",which shows the horror done to the people of sabah,as well australian soldiers.we bought both thers books a few days ago in sandakan.we were lucky to sit next to lynette and her husband neil it the memorial service.
the reminiscences read out byveterans relatives were most moving,as were several poems by nonsurvivors,and a tape recording of one of the 6 survivors singinghis own song in 2008 service about his experience.hearing australian soldiers being so honoured,the australian anthem,and the last paost,were all most moving and humbling.
there is a small pavilion with info-the brutality is not hidden,and the perpetrators clearly stated.
after the service breakfast and tea /coffee were provided.the park is on the site of former death camp,a hilly site,several acres,surrounded by suburbia now,but full of beautiful mature trees,and gardens,extremely tasteful and peaceful.someone said the australian govt is responsible for upkeep.
the yachties in 2 minivans decide on a Giant supermarket(the best range in malaysia)stop.so kerry got her tasty bega cheese.a bid day so decided to delay departure to tomorrow.we moved computer,ipad and printer to yachtclub verandah to make a little office to print off several blogs on phillipines(THANKYOU MV SOLITA &SV PACIFIC EXPRESS).We had a lovely lunch here of fried rice and mixed vegetables,watched some catamarans departing,kerry googled sipidan diving again,and is booking dive holiday,whik[le bruce is doing blog and emails.
CONGRATULATIONS to our great friend DAVID MACFARLANE,solo sailor,who has just sailed into SUWARROW,in middle of south pacific-WELL DONE!!!