Monday 8 August 2011 by carwal. No comments
1941, Tobruk, Tobruk diaries, Tobruk, Rats of Tobruk, crete

Bryant’s Diary:  Friday 8th August 1941

The camp isn’t so bad.  The surf and beach are good and it is a lazy life.  We parade for an hour in the morning and once in the afternoon for a swim.  The canteen service is good and a fair picture theatre operates.  The place improves with time.

Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 8th August 1941

Retired at 2 pm – up at 6:30 to drive in for Mass with two pretty dry comrades.  Mass for Dan Murphy.  All my patients are convalescent and I could find only two in bed.  Tom Gard in and we had a great swim at Anzac Cove... When Tom left, Reynolds came and talked and talked about Ellen – killed last night...  No more evacuation until the mess disappears...C.O. buying beer for patients with regimental funds...

Cosgriff’s Diary:  Saturday 9th August 1941

Excellent night and only disturbed by shelling.  Missa – D. Murphy. Fair round today and reclaimed a couple.  Big conference of Padres and C.O.  I told him my duties and declined advice as to what I should do.  Mail to be put in mess for censoring.  Mail today – only one letter – from Bart.  Steele in this arvo with breads.  Base of meningitis in ward 9 – hope it does not spread.  Have to go and say Pearce’s prayers with him now – I hope he recovers...

Cosgriff’s Diary:  Sunday 10th August 1941

Plenty of planes over during the night.  Two masses only today and I had to send the overflow to the Eyetie Mass – not nearly so good as when we had the Church.  Mail in – Elsa only and a Manly death.  Crouch and Collins stayed here for morning tea and argued re. Irish ports with McQuillan...Severe blitz this evening dive-bombers but they did not dive as they did when Jerry was in them.  Not much damage and rumour that three shot down but I disbelieve it...John Received Truths story re. Tommy Griffin and Lurlene...


Cosgriff’s Diary:  Monday 11th August 1941

Plenty of planes again but Len and I slept through most of it – they were over by accounts continually from 1 to 4 am – we heard the first and last.  Mass for Jas Darley.  Too big a mob today for me to do in one day.  Beach and ward Z wanting me to visit them but too many here at present.  Mail – tribute from Jas McGlynn funeral today – victim of yesterday’s bombing – my first visit to the cemetery in weeks.  Eric Cooper – a son – they are all calling their kids Peter.  Wheeler to leave us for a Con. camp.  Shelling this evening but no bombs – yet.  Mail for censoring in mess again – but not many doing it...


Bryant’s Diary:  Tuesday 12th August 1941

Clive Armstrong of the 2/3rd Bn arrived at the depot in a very bad state of shell-shock.  He used to belong to our platoon.  He struck it bad in both Crete and Greece.



Tobruk. Libya, June 1941.  Troops arriving in Alexandria after evacuation following the Crete campaign. Tobruk. Libya, June 1941. Troops arriving in Alexandria after evacuation following the Crete campaign.

Cosgriff’s Diary:  Tuesday 12th August 1941

Two sticks of bombs very close to us last night.  Missa T. Belli... Plenty of casualties from last night’s bombs – 2/43rd hit by 4-positons from petrol dump.  Barge sunk by mine.  Injuries all severe but none for me... Censoring done in mess now.  Tearing up old letters and there were plenty of them.  B.B.C. commemoration last night mentioned Tobruk troops on leave in Cairo.  Also Jerry’s air-raids are laughed at – oh yeah! That probably accounts for last night’s blitz.  Two Hurricanes over today – the Air Force has doubled itself in a week.  No shelling of any account today.  Johnston said reading this was like trying to milk the bull...


Bryant’s Diary:  Wednesday 13th August 1941

Left early today for two day’s leave to Tel Aviv.  This place is very modern in appearance and every convenience is available, we had a celebration to honour our birthdays.


 Cosgriff’s Diary:  Wednesday 13th August 1941

Blitz as usual between two and four.  Mass for Davis R.I.P.  Hospital bombed this morning – 5 hit when I was in 9.  One killed, several injured including Hore (ear and leg) and Hayward.  Lucky they were not killed.  All feel now that we are targets day and night.  Buried victim of bombing and killed one and wounded a couple.  Only reply to the Hurricane but we have to get out after a dive under the bed.  Queen’s cousin exhumed at cemetery and found to lie on Eyetie dead.  I think Fr. Borsorelli returned to Alex tonight...Mail in – home, letter dated 27/7/41 – not bad... 


Bryant’s Diary:  Thursday 14th August 1941

Spent a very quiet day swimming, eating, etc. We returned to the depot in good time to go to the pictures.  We heard rumours of America entering the war.


Cosgriff’s Diary:  Thursday14th August 1941

About five raids and each plane dropped 12 bombs each.  Mass for fellows and Leo Lechy.  Easy round today.  News from Russia no good.  Only small mail and none for me.  Went to Leo’s burial today and Len erected his cross over Lewin.  Listened to Atlee’s statement re. Churchill’s and Roosevelt’s meeting – hoping they are peace fellers.  Four of our officers to be relieved soon and slight prospects for all of us – except me I suppose.  Plenty of troops bomb-happy after yesterday’s raid.  Steele says it is a reprisal for bombing of Derna hospital...Letter from Alec and he is still sick – but enjoying peace.  Eyetie chaplain leaving tonight for Alex.  New medico – O’Connor a R.C...