Ohlin, James Michael (Trooper, b.1924 - d.2008)


Collection relating to the Second World War service of VX146128 Trooper James Michael ‘Jim’ Ohlin, 2/9 Commando Squadron, Second Australian Imperial Force, Australia, c 1995.

Wallet 1 of 1 – Consists of one copy of memoir of Trooper James Michael ‘Jim’ Ohlin, written in c 1995. This memoir covers the period between 1942 and 1946, containing details of Trooper Ohlin’s enlistment to the Commonwealth Military Forces, transfer to the Australian Imperial Force, training, and service with 2/9 Commando Squadron in New Guinea. In his memoir, Trooper Ohlin writes about being called up to join the army, leaving his work as a bank clerk, settling into his first Army camp, anti-tank training exercises, recreational activities, going home for Christmas, volunteering for work in a fruit cannery, going to dances with local girls, escorting AWL soldiers back to their units, moving camps, being on leave, assisting local farmers in picking crops, and medical treatment and recovery from an infected thumb. He then goes on to write about jungle training in Queensland, commando training in a national park, completing difficult obstacle courses, being posted to 2/9 Commando Squadron, meeting old acquaintances, playing Australian Rules football, practicing with Owen guns, embarking from Townsville, landing in New Guinea, settling into camp, an incident involving a hand grenade, patrols to search for Japanese soldiers in thick jungle and mountain villages, working with 'Fuzzy Wuzzies', donating blood to an injured soldier, having dysentery, the capture of Arohemi Ridge, witnessing the deaths of other soldiers, hearing of the end of the war in Europe, participating in the landing at Dove Bay as part of Farida Force, an ambush operation, being responsible for the setting and disarming of booby traps, landing at Dagua, expelling Japanese from a local village, hearing of the end of the war, playing cricket and baseball on an airstrip, treatment for a tropical ulcer, convalescing at Wewak, and returning to Australia.

History / Summary

Trooper James Michael 'Jim' Ohlin enlisted to the Second Australian Imperial Force on 5 November 1943, after previously serving in the Citizens Military Force in Victoria. Trooper Ohlin completed artillery training in New South Wales, and jungle and commando training in Queensland. He was posted to 2/9 Commando Squadron, and embarked for service in New Guinea in October 1944. With 2/9 Commando Squadron, Trooper Ohlin participated in the Aitape-Wewak campaign. After the war, Trooper Ohlin returned to Australia, and was discharged on 26 November 1946.