Paybook photograph, taken on enlistment, of NX33361 Private Richard Murray, 22 Brigade  Headquarters.  He was one of over 2000 Allied prisoners of war (POW) held in the Sandakan POW camp in north ...
ID numberP02467.285
Collection typePhotograph
Object typeBlack & white - Film copy negative
MakerUnknown
Place madeAustralia: New South Wales
Date made2 May 1941
DescriptionPaybook photograph, taken on enlistment, of NX33361 Private Richard Murray, 22 Brigade Headquarters. He was one of over 2000 Allied prisoners of war (POW) held in the Sandakan POW camp in north Borneo, having been transferred there from Singapore as a part of B Force. The 1494 POW's that made up B Force, were transported from Changi on 7 July 1942 on board the tramp ship Ubi Maru, arriving in Sandakan Harbour on 18 July 1942. In May 1945 Private Murray was one of only 30 POWs still alive at Ranau. He and Pte Keith Botterill stole rice from the Japanese to build up food stocks as they intended to escape. When the theft was discovered Pte Murray stepped forward to take responsibility, knowing he would be killed. He was bayonetted and his body thrown into a bomb crater at Ranau on 20 May 1945. Pte Murray sacrificed his life to save his friend. Pte Botterill did escape, he was one of only six survivors of the Sandakan death marches. Pte Murray was the son of Frank and Catherine Murray and the husband of Margaret Murray, of Hurstville, NSW. His body was recovered from Ranau and is now buried in the Labuan Cemetery Section 21, Row E, Plot 7. (Photograph copied from AWM232, items 4 and 5. Personal information from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Database.)