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P05555.015

Image copyright: Status to be assessed

ID number P05555.015
Collection Photograph
Object type Black & white - Print silver gelatin
Photographer Unknown
Place made Australia

Description

Composite group portrait of Mary and Henry Hutchins, of Woorinen North, Vic, and seven of their sons. Back row, left to right: David, Malcolm, Eric, Fred, William and Ivan. Front row, left to right: Mary, Alan and Henry. The seven brothers enlisted and served overseas during the Second World War. Only three, VX41288 Private (Pte) Ivan Robert Hutchins, 2/4th Field Ambulance, VX37192 Bombardier Malcolm George "Mike" Hutchins, 156th Light Anti Aircraft Battery, and VX41229 Pte William Ernest (Bill) Hutchins, 2/22nd Battalion (later 2/23rd Battalion), survived the war and returned to Australia. They had served in the Middle East and New Guinea. VX61203 Pte Fred Hutchins, VX61202 Pte David Arthur Hutchins, VX61201 Pte Eric Everard Hutchins, and a cousin, VX50460 Pte Thomas Hutchins, all of 2/21st Battalion (Gull Force), died as prisoners of war (POW) of the Japanese at Ambon, Netherlands East Indies. Pte Fred Hutchins died on 6 July 1945, Pte David Hutchins on 29 July 1945, Pte Eric Hutchins on 20 February 1942, and Pte Thomas Hutchins on 4 September 1945. VX41293 Pte Alan Leslie Hutchins, 2/22nd Battalion (Lark Force), died as a POW on 31 March 1942 at Rabaul, New Britain. VX74662 Sapper Fredrick Wallace, 9th Field Company, Royal Australian Engineers, another cousin of the Hutchins brothers, was a member of the recovery team which visited Ambon in October 1945 to uncover mass graves and identify remains, including those of his cousins, at Laha airfield and Tantoei camp. This group portrait is a combination of separate photographs taken in the 1940s, including enlistment portraits. It was produced by the family after the war. As some of the brothers enlisted and were posted overseas at different times it was not possible for a group portrait to be taken during the war.