• Tobruk Diaries: ‘Tobruk essential for each side’

    Monday 11 July 2011 by . 1 comments

    Bryant’s Diary:  Friday 11th July 1941 I can get around on my own now.  I feel a bit shaky, but I’m getting stronger.  A convoy of wounded arrived from Tobruk during the night.   Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 11th July 1941 Mosquitoes have me beat – worse than bombers.  Missa Tempore Belli [Mass in Time of War]. Few casualties this morning from line change over 17th/32nd...To beach after lunch – two clients only – Dick Ley …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Planes, Mosquitoes and Heat

    Monday 4 July 2011 by .

    Bryant’s Diary:  Friday 4th, Saturday 5th July 1941 Just the usual hospital routine, a pretty rapid improvement as a result. Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 4th July 1941 Fair night – undisturbed.  Missa Tempore Belli [Mass in Time of War].  After communion to the Beach but I did not see very many.  Roast beef for tea tonight even on Friday. Mail expected today but did not arrive.   Planes fly very low over the beach – honed …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Danger below...

    Monday 27 June 2011 by .

    Bryant’s Diary:  Friday 27th June 1941 The section worked all night putting mortar-proof roofs over dug-outs.  We were just putting the finishing touches on our work when Reg stuck his pick in a jumping German mine.  I received four ball shrapnel wounds in the small of the back and one in the left arm.  Jim was hit twice in the groin, Reg a couple in the legs and Monty one in the ribs.  After going through nearly every medical …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Mail and other miracles

    Monday 20 June 2011 by .

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 20th June 1941 Peaceful night at last.  Missa SS Cordis Jesus...  To beach this morning and worked all morning without finishing.  Had a John Swan’s with Eric.  John Horan as usual pessimistic about our position.  The big push was definitely a big failure.  God knows what will happen to us now but we hope for a Russo-German struggle.  Still no mail but a parcel from Mrs Garvey with a pair of socks. …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Rest in Peace

    Monday 13 June 2011 by .

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 13th June 1941 Heard only one raid and stayed in bed for it.  Mass for Anderson R.I.P.  To beach this morning but not so many there for me.  Bombed down there on Tuesday evening and John Horan reckoned his dug-out turned a somersault.  He also reckons the pearls fly through the tents down there.  Bomb on hospital ward this evening.  Eyetie artisan working on my timepieces.  Started on Hamlet today …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Movement in the moonlight

    Monday 6 June 2011 by . 1 comments

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 6th June 1941 Up several times for planes dropping thermos bombs and flares, one plane caught in search light but not shot down.  Missa in Tempore belli [Mass in Time of War].  Trouble getting beach communions now.  Plenty of fleas in my bed.  Wireless bung and no news now.  Rumour of mail being sunk.  Millions of flies in Tobruk.  Started to use Australian wine and a bit doubtful about it.  Reading …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Getting hotter...

    Monday 30 May 2011 by .

    Bryant’s Diary:  Friday 30th May 1941 More digging today and it was through solid rock.  The weather is getting hotter.  We came home by another route – past Fort Palestrino – and it was the roughest ride I’ve ever had.  We were pulled out of the water in a hurry and were made to stand to in expectation of an attack which did not eventuate. Cosgriff’s Diary:  Saturday 31st May 1941 Stayed up till 12 last night talking –…

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Swimming, digging and a spot of baking

    Monday 23 May 2011 by .

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 23rd May 1941 Another raid by night DG.  Mass of B.V.M [Blessed Virgin Mary].  Down for swim with Gardy and John Rue – pretty good too.  Disappointing morning among patients – 2 dogs and 2 first confessions.  Dust started early arvo.  Len flat out on German things at front very quiet.  Evacuation tonight in the dust – Gunner going back for supplies but hating his luggage.  Steele wrote a loving …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: The first VC

    Monday 16 May 2011 by . 2 comments

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 16th May 1941 Up often for warnings – no bombs – alarm failed...so no Mass...No communion either.  Wrote to Aileen and I will post it this time.  Jerrys in Syria and Irak will probably affect our air mail.  Push on today by 2/12.  Plenty of casualties but none serious.  Two Jerry prisoners – first for long time.  Eyetie prisoner who threw grenade brought in...  Going to teach Fr. Borsorelli …

    Read on

  • Tobruk Diaries: Masses, Miracles and a Godsend

    Monday 9 May 2011 by .

    Cosgriff’s Diary:  Friday 9th May 1941 Mass of BVM [Blessed Virgin Mary].  Evacuation flopped...ship failed to turn up – tonight?  Gave McIven Dr. Regiss card to give to Eyetie chaplain.  Two bombs very close to wards 2 and 7 – if the first had hit so would the second.  The new shelter in 7 stood it with full marks – second miracle this week.  Two very sick patients Lemon and Kennedy holding their own.  Quiet at front and …

    Read on