THE HON ANDREW HASTIE MP
FEDERAL MEMBER FOR CANNING
SHADOW MINISTER FOR DEFENCE
26 AUGUST 2022
80TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BATTLE OF ISURAVA
Today, on the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Isurava, we pause to remember the extraordinary courage and sacrifice of our veterans and those Australian service personnel who fought against the odds in the Pacific during World War.
The Battle of Isurava was a fierce action fought along the Kokoda Trail lasting from the 26th to the 31st of August.
Tragically, 99 Australians were killed and 111 were wounded.
We remember those brave soldiers of the 39th battalion – of whom the average age was just 18 – and the 2/14th Battalion who, with poor equipment and limited support, fought resolutely against a numerically superior Japanese force.
Private Bruce Kingsbury won a Victoria Cross for his actions during the Battle – the only VC awarded of the Kokoda campaign.
To save the lives of his mates, Private Kingsbury charged the enemy positions with a Bren gun – firing until he fell and taking a number of casualties before his own death at the hands of a sniper.
We remember the mateship of the Papuan people, whose companionship and care for the Australian soldiers saved lives.
We honour the enduring bonds between Australia and Papua New Guinea forged out of our shared struggle and sacrifice for freedom in the Pacific.
Lest we forget.
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