Vic. Paybook photograph, taken on enlistment, of VFX38751 Sister Caroline Mary Ennis, 2/10th Australian General Hospital, Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS). She was one of sixty five ...

Collection ID P02783.015
Collection type Photograph
Title Vic. Paybook photograph, taken on enlistment, of VFX38751 Sister Caroline Mary Ennis, 2/10th Australian General Hospital, Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS). She was one of sixty five ...
Object type Black & white
Copyright Copyright expired - public domain

Vic. Paybook photograph, taken on enlistment, of VFX38751 Sister Caroline Mary Ennis, 2/10th Australian General Hospital, Australian Army Nursing Service (AANS). She was one of sixty five Australian nurses and over 250 civilian men, women and children evacuated on the Vyner Brooke from Singapore three days before the fall of Malaya. The Vyner Brooke was bombed by Japanese aircraft and sunk in Banka Strait on 14 February 1942. Of the sixty five nurses, thirty two survived the sinking and were taken Prisoner of War (POW) of which eight later died in captivity, another twenty two also survived the sinking and were washed ashore on Radji Beach, Banka Island, where they surrendered to the Japanese along with twenty five British soldiers. On 16 February 1942 the group was massacred, the soldiers were bayoneted and the nurses were ordered to march into the sea where they were shot. Only Sister Vivian Bullwinkel and a British soldier survived the massacre. Both were taken POW, but only Sister Bullwinkel survived the war. Sister Ennis, aged 28, was one of twelve nurses who were lost at sea. She was washed out to sea on a raft holding two small children on her lap, along with Matron Paschke and Sister's Trenery, McDonald, Dorsch and Clarke. They were never seen again. She was the daughter of Mary Josephine Graham of Cheshunt, Vic. (Photograph copied from original photograph attached to attestation form, lent by Central Army Records Office.)

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