Friday, 18 September 2009

From your Daddy and pal always

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On September 27th of 1945, whilst on a ship headed for Sydney, Australian soldier Charles Castle wrote the following emotional letter to his young son after being released from Changi's Prisoner of War Camp — a camp at which he had been held captive for 3 years — and announced his imminent return. Charles eventually arrived home in January of 1946, nearly two years after his heartbroken family had been told, by telegram, that he was missing in action and to expect the worst.

Transcript follows.

(Source: Australia Post; Image: Prisoners of war at Changi, 1942, via.)



Transcript
On the LARGS BAY.
AT SEA.

27th Sept

DARLING RON,

WELL LITTLE PAL DADDY IS ON HIS WAY HOME TO YOU AND MUMMY AT LAST. HAS BEEN A LONG TIME HASN'T IT BUT NEVER MIND RON, NEVER AGAIN. WE WILL HAVE SOME GREAT TIMES TOGETHER JUST YOU AND I AND IF MUMMY IS GOOD WELL MAYBE HER TOO. WHAT SAY YOU. DO HOPE YOU RECEIVED MY LAST LETTER. WHEN YOU GET THIS NOTE RON, DADDY SHOULD ONLY BE A COUPLE OF DAYS FROM SYDNEY, SHOULD NOT HAVE LONG TO WAIT BEFORE WE ARE TOGETHER AGAIN. WHAT A HAPPY DAY THIS WILL BE, BUT BELIEVE ME RON THERE WILL BE LOTS MORE TO COME. WELL LITTLE PAL WILL SAY CHEERIO FOR THE PRESENT WITH A BIG KISS AND HUG FOR YOU AND MUMMY. ALL MY LOVE TO YOU BOTH. FROM YOUR DADDY AND PAL ALWAYS.

XXXXXX