Robert Henry Parker as a motorcycle dispatch rider Signals Platoon 3rd Battalion The Royal Australian Regiment (3 RAR) and a prisoner of war, Korea 1950-1953, interviewed by Bill Fogarty

Accession Number S02658
Collection type Sound
Measurement 2 hr 1 min
Object type Oral history
Physical description digital audio tape (DAT); BASF DM 124; two track mono
Maker Parker, Robert
Fogarty, William 'Bill' Lawrance
Australian War Memorial
Preston, Lenny
Date made 26 October 2001
Access Open
Conflict Korea, 1950-1953
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Copying Provisions Copy provided for personal non-commercial use
Source credit to AWM Oral History Program

Parker speaks of his family background and work as well as naval cadet activity during the Second World War; enlistment in the Army in 1944; post-war Occupation Force duty in Japan, then work and Citizen Military Forces (CMF) activities; enlistment in the Army for the Korean War; training with 3 RAR and deployment from Japan to Korea; duties as a 3 RAR dispatch rider and guide for battalion headquarters; the Battle of Kapyong and his capture by the Chinese Army; joining other 3 RAR prisoners of the Chinese in North Korea; his escape during a march from the 'Bean Camp' to Camp 5; his capture by North Korean troops and his 'rescue' by Chinese troops; internment in Camp 9 (‘The Caves'); being taken to the ‘indoctrination school' near Pyongyang (Camp 12); his eventual dispatch to reach the original destination, Camp 5, by December 1952; his brief escape from Camp 5 in June 1953; his continuing wound problems and the treatment by Chinese Army doctors; prisoner punishment accommodation and treatment; an encounter with the Australian communist journalist Wilfred Burchett; his visionary experience relating to a fellow prisoner-of-war Private Horace William ('Slim') Madden.