Paul C. Earle
THE LEGACY OF WAR
Victor Rule 3051
3rd Australian light Horse. Palestine, Beersheba. DOD - Malaria
Reginald Tannebring 15085
5th Div Signal Corp 1916-8. France. DOW - Gas Ganister
Vivian ‘Rolly’ Rule 1336
Boer War Sth Africa 1901-2. Aust Comm Horse Medical Corp. South Africa
Vivian ‘Rolly’ Rule 2479
WW1 1916-8 France. 48th Batt AIF
Charles Bruce Rule MID SX7313: 9 platoon A Co. 2/48th Batt 9th Div 2nd AIF. Tobruk, Tel Eliza, El Alemain, Lae, Morotai, Tarakan. 1940-19455
Viner Phillips SX7314
9 platoon A Co. 2/48th Batt 9th Div 2nd AIF. Tobruk, Tel Eliza, ElAlemain 1940-3
Harold Earle 417821
50 Squadron RAF (RAAF). Europe 1942-4: KIA - Lancaster lost without trace over the north seaThe Legacy of War has been with us since Federation,
And it has given so much to forge the spirit of our nation.
My Family was there, and has suffered as it served,
To ensure our freedoms are truly preserved.
Victor was with the Light Horse, though a builder by trade,
Palestine was where he was sent, and where he was laid
He was only twenty one when malaria took his young life.
He lies there now, at peace, amidst Middle East strife.
Brother Clarence was in France, and doing it hard.
He stayed at his post whilst wounded and scarred
He got a medal for that to wear on his chest.
And when he was better, he was back with the rest.
In France, young Reg copped the gas. He took five days to die.
Now it’s a cold and wet English grave where his bones must lie.
I have his photo and death plaque up on my wall,
He might be in England, but he’s not forgotten at all
And Rolly was there too, a veteran of the Boer War.
And he made it through again, back, to his own front door.
When Germany rose up, Rolly was out, trying again,
He came home furious, because they wanted younger men.
But his son, my Great Uncle Bruce, he was on his way,
With my Grandfather Viner, both on infantry pay.
Straight to Tobruk where with true Aussie blood they bought,
The Allies first victory, despite the odds that they fought.
Then Viner was ill and home he was brought.
His wife was so happy, to see the man that she sought,
But not my three year old Mum, born just as he’d left,
And their relations were strained, I saw, unto his death.
Bruce went to the Pacific, to fight the other foe;
They were for it, ‘cos he dealt more than a blow.
In the jungle and on the sand, he laid them to rest,
He earnt the bravery medal, that they pinned to his chest.
Home to his wife at last, but not for a good time,
He was sick and then he was dead, at just forty nine.
I don’t have his medals, up on the wall,
‘Cos his things were tossed, medals and all.
I have Frank’s model ship, that he made with love and care,
But I had no photo of him, and couldn’t find- one, anywhere,
So I dug and I dug, ‘till I got one, quite by mistake.
Now he’s up with my others, whose deeds were so great.
He spent three long years away from wife and two little ‘uns,
And he didn’t come back ‘til it was dusted and done.
But his wife was no more; Dad and Aunty were in hostile care.
An ugly homecoming, and too much for gentle Frank to bear.
So RAAF Frank wanted no more of this past life,
His children out of reach, along with his dear wife.
And his little brother Harry, had gone to a watery grave,
Flying a Lancaster, for England’s honour to save.
So by looking and asking some more, I learnt,
That Frank never applied for the medals he’d earnt.
So my letter went in and the RAAF gave a call,
Now his medals too, are up on my wall.
And for my Family, the War was not done,
Its Legacy would continue, for long years to come.
From War, many men don’t return the same;
Still to come was more suffering and pain.
My Father’s time in ‘care’ had left him deeply scarred,
Determined to build a good life, he worked at it hard.
But the rock he built on proved to be shifty,
He took it too hard, and he was dead at fifty.
Mark was a boy in the Sixties, that time to rebel,
So he and Viner clashed, and it made their lives hell.
A bright young man, and his prospects were plenty,
But he was unable to reconcile, and he was dead at twenty.
So for our Great Country, my Family has suffered and served,
And the scars have run deep, with the pain undeserved.
But as we have gone on, to be stronger than ever,
It is our duty now, to always Remember
©Copyright July 2009 by Paul C. Earle
Author’s Note: A poem “The Legacy of War”, written July 09, dedicated to the many men of my Family who have served their country over three wars, and of the impact it had on the following generations. I knew some of the men named in the poem, and have spent many hours with Family who knew those who died before my time. I spent many months writing the biographies of my Grandfather and my Father to help the perpetuation of their memory.
My research uncovered many of the earlier service details, and other veterans provided further stories. Bruce’s former Lt praised him as a brave man and a “good soldier”. Some events still come up around the dinner table. My, usually even tempered Great Grandfather, Rolly, returned home from the WW2 recruiting office absolutely livid, after being told that, at 59, and after two Wars, he had already done his bit, thanks,
I have photographs and artefacts collected by these men that have been approved for publication on the AWM website and for use in an upcoming display at the Shrine of Remembrance, in Melbourne.
I would like my email address to be published, with a note that I welcome any information and stories of these men, to maximise the footprint they have left in the sands of Australian history.
My Grandfather, Viner and Great Grandfather ‘Rolly’ have had their photos and short biographies posted on the Australian War Memorial website.
I have ensured that my sons are very aware of their family’s military history and the debt we owe all Australian veterans. Between my wife and I they have 26 ANZACs on their family tree. So when asked to pick any picture and write a passage about it, my son Jared chose the famous painting “Sergeant of the Light Horse” by George W. Lambert and wrote a piece called “Insight into the Mind of the Sergeant of the Light Horse”. He was 17 at the time.
Paul C. Earle
November 6, 2009
Leslie Earle (Paul’s Father)
Mark Phillips (Paul’s Uncle)
Some photographs and pieces of memorabilia collected by my grandfather Viner Phillips, was on display in the Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne, until August 1, 2010. He had his own case and a few extra pieces scattered around the exhibition. There are several photos, but unfortunately he wasn’t recognised as the photographer, so only my name appears, as the contributor. However it is a rare honour for him, even gaining a mention in the opening speech, just a shame he isn’t here to see it.