WEDNESDAY marked the 70th anniversary of the fall of Singapore and a day to remember the 15,000 Australian Diggers and nurses taken prisoner by the Japanese.
Pingelly veteran George Smith said he remembers vividly the mateship of his time in the Army and as a prisoner of war.
Initially lying about his age to enlist during June 1941, he was almost immediately found out and discharged.
In November that year, Mr Smith legally re-enlisted and arrived in Singapore on Australia Day in 1942 as a reinforcement for the 2/18th Battalion. He was taken prisoner on February 15 when the garrison surrendered.
Once freed in September 1945, George returned to Australia for medical treatment and recovery, then volunteered to join the British Commonwealth Occupation Force in Japan and was posted to the 67th Battalion at Kure.
Returning to Australia, he was discharged in July 1950.
Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Warren Snowdon joined Mr Smith and five other veterans of the Malayan Campaign and the fall, at a memorial service at Kranji War Cemetery.