Brisbane, QLD

Friday, April 15, 2011


My brother, David, left home at 19 in 1956 to work in the jungles of Papua/New Guinea as a Patrol Officer. He sent us many letters and coloured slides of his adventures. (I don't know what happened to his slides but I did find this old print.) From the news we received from him, he was enjoying his work, which was exciting and sometimes dangerous. He had to navigate crocodile infested rivers, climb steep mountains and penetrate villages where tribes had not seen white men before.We had missed him and we were looking forward to him coming home for 3 months leave, which is what Patrol Officers got every two years.
David in TPNG 1958

All the family together again.

While David was home and I was still on school holidays we went on some day trips. On Boxing Day we drove into the Blue Mts, west of Sydney, to the small town of Blackheath. David invited his friend Mervyn and his sister Shirley.

Shirley and I enjoyed the pool.
There we met our friends Ida and Jenny who had come from Mudgee, on the other side of the mountains. Ida had adopted another two children, Fiona and Robert, since the last time we saw them.

Lto R: Shirley, Jenny, David, Fiona, Ida, Mervyn, Robert, Mum and Dad.

L to R:  Dad, David, Mum and Mervyn at Mt Keira Lookout. All four have now passed away.
Mervyn overlooking Wollongong from Mt Keira.
Another day we headed down the south coast to Wollongong and Mt Keira lookout. Mervyn was David's best friend from when they were at high school. He worked in Sydney and remained friends with my parents until they died. He kept an eye on them for David and me, as neither of us returned to live in Sydney.


  1. I have fallen behind with blogging this week as I simply have not had the heart for it, Diane. I know you understand. Thank you very much for your heartfelt condolences. They are greatly appreciated.

    I have enjoyed reading today's post and seeing the pictures of all of you together. I realise it will have been sad for you as neither your Mum and Dad, nor David are still alive, but your many memories are so precious.
    You were such a little cutie, weren't you!

    I will catch up with the posts I missed when I feel up to it.


    Des xo

  2. Those are nice memories to treassure. It is great you have the photo's to keep the memories alive.

  3. Lovely to see that happy photo taken at the Mt Keira lookout - I'm sure it's very special to you.

  4. You've found some wonderful memories in these old photos. Thanks for sharing them with us.

  5. The only way I would enjoy this sharing of your life and photographs would be if I could sit with you on the couch, shoulder to shoulder. It does feel that way. How nice to get to know you so, and how much I am coming to like you!

  6. Neat post and great photos!!

  7. Wonderful memories, Diane! I enjoyed the post about your brother and the photos.

  8. Oh Diane, I can hear the ache in your heart all the way to Memphis, TN. How we miss those we love when they are gone.

    Doing these posts about David and remembering all the wonderful times you had with him will help -- it may bring tears at first, but God will heal that heart and soul with your tears.

    Love from Memphis, TN

  9. There were very good home photos for the nice that you have them to share with your grandson..

  10. You obviously like swimming .. most people don't come to the mountains to swim unless it is under a waterfall. The pool at Blackheath is still lovely and inviting even today.

  11. It is so interesting for me to see how your family managed to start a completely different and new life ! how exciting for a young man working as patrol officer an a still partly undiscovered land !

  12. Lovely photos Diane, and some great memories. Did your brother enjoy his time in Papua-New Guinea? I've always thought of it as sounding a very adventurous place and exotic.

  13. thanks for sharing those precious photos with us.

    great memories, too, oh how loved this post.

    happy weekend!

  14. Diane these are just wonderful images and memories - many I've experienced myself. I do remember Black Heath not being t-shirt & shorts weather, even in summer!
    "The Gong" was always lovely, even though I was a born and bred Northern Beaches girl.

    Your camera skills were certainly being honed, even back then. Just lovely!

  15. Happy days, surrounded by all the people you loved most in the world. Photos and memories of this time are precious.

  16. Thanks for sharing some of your memories and family photos. I enjoyed this post :-)

  17. your family story and the old black and white photos continue to bring back memories of my youth. the photos look so much like our family photos taken in that same era.

  18. Your story posts are going to nudge me into a scanning project I started once and then abandoned.
    Maybe this summer when we're back in Oregon.

    Today's memories are poignant, because I've read your tribute to David on your sidebar.

  19. Your brother was quite adventerous to go into the jungle. I bet he told some wonderful stories of his experiences.
    That is some overlook. The view looks expansive. I bet today there isn't as much bare land below.
    This was another enjoyable post Diane.

  20. Great memories but i love to watch your pictures and make up a whole new story!


  21. Such good memories you have of your brother, David, Diane. I always enjoy seeing his picture on your sidebar.

    I had two brothers (both have passed away now)... They were both older than I am, so our relationship wasn't like most siblings. Ray was 20 yrs. OLDER and Jim was 12 yrs. OLDER. But---I loved them both dearly and miss them so much.


  22. Wow = great collection of photos and memories. THIS is the way to document the past - thanks for sharing.