Ninety-seven-year-old Dennis Davis survived the siege of Tobruk and the fighting at El Alamein, but was left devastated when he received a ‘Dear John' letter from his fiancée just before Christmas in 1942.
“I’d met a nice Australian girl. We had a very good relationship, and we got engaged,” said Davis, who was born in London in 1920 and moved to Australia with his family when he was 17.
“But then I said to her, ‘If I’d been in England still, I’d have been forced into the army,’ and I thought I’d rather volunteer than be forced in later. I volunteered for the RAAF, but I failed the medical when they discovered I was colour blind. Then, of course, when Dunkirk came, I thought, well, it’s time to join up … [so] I went down to Martin Place [in Sydney] during my lunch break and enlisted in the AIF… around about June 1940.”