Pte. Gordon John MAKIM, ,2/19th Battalion,A.I.F.

Male 1922 - 1945  (22 years)


Personal Information

  • Name Gordon John MAKIM 
    Prefix Pte. 
    Suffix ,2/19th Battalion,A.I.F. 
    Born 3 Jul 1922  Inverell, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 17 Jun 1945  the vicinity of Sandakan P.O.W Camp, Borneo Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • NX42217, A.I.F. 2/20 Bn., Australian Infantry,who was killed (Prisoner of War) age 23 on 17 June 1945.Remembered with honour.LABUAN MEMORIAL Panel 14 and Gordon's name is located at panel 45 in the Commemorative Area at the Australian War Memorial.(Gordon actually transferred from 2/20th Battalion to 2/19th Battalion on 26th January 1942,just prior to the fall of Singapore on 15th February 1942.He was captured on 17th Feb. 1942 at Tanglin,in the central region of Singapore ,now surrounded by the present day Botanical Gardens.) The Japanese conquered British and Dutch Borneo early in 1942, and the 2/19th surrendered on 15th Feb 1942, and all the men who survived were incarerated in Changi POW Camp.(Gordons Prisoner of War Records were returned to the Australian Government by the Japanese Government in 2013 and it records that Gordon was captured on 17th Feb 1942.)

      Initially imprisoned in the sprawling Changi prisoner of war camp, it was not long before members of the 2/19th were allocated to external work parties. The largest of these groups was D Force, which was sent to work on the Burma-Thailand railway. Lesser numbers were dispatched with other parties bound for the railway and to camps in Borneo, Japan, French Indochina, Java, Sumartra, and Malaya. The surviving prisoners were liberated in late-August 1945 and began returning to Australia almost immediately. The 2/19th was formally disbanded later in 1945, having suffered the highest casualties of any Australian Army unit during war.

      B Force (1,496-strong) included 145 officers and medical staff. Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel A. W. Walsh of the 2/10th Field Regiment, it left Singapore in the Ubi Maru on 8 July 1942 and after a nine-day journey in poor conditions disembarked at Sandakan .

      E Force embarked on the steamer de Klerk on 29 March 1943 . It contained 500 British prisoners, who disembarked at Kuching, and 500 Australian prisoners , who were sent to Berhala Island (North Borneo) In early June 1943, E Force was moved to Sandakan . Prisoners in B and E Forces included troops from the 2/18th, 2/19th, 2/20th, 2/26th, 2/29th, 2/30th Battalions, 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion, and the 2/10th Field Ambulance. There were four main camps in Borneo : Sandakan , Kuching, Labuan and Jesselton.

      Of these, Sandakan contained the majority of Australians. Captain Hoshijima Susumi commanded Sandakan Camp. In January 1945 the first forced march to Ranau occurred, and the second in May 1945. Of the 2,500 Australian and British prisoners of war, only six Australians survived these "death marches".
    Person ID I413  Kirkpatrick Family Archives
    Last Modified 2 Jun 2019 

    Father Frederick Winslow MAKIM,   b. 9 Jan 1889, Springfield , Gum Flat .NSW, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 2 Apr 1970, Inverell, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 81 years) 
    Mother Vera May EVANS,   b. 23 Aug 1895, Milton, New South Wales , Australia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 Mar 1967, Inverell, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 71 years) 
    Married 1920  Kyogle, New South Wales, Australia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F326  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart




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