Darwin Bombing Anniversary Lest We Forget

Darwin Bombing Anniversary Lest We Forget

Victoria Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Hugh Delahunty

Minister Commemorates 69th Anniversary Of Darwin Bombing

Victor P Taffa

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Hugh Delahunty today joined members of the Darwin Defenders 1942 – 45 at the Shrine of Remembrance to commemorate 69 years since the bombing of Darwin.

The Darwin Defenders a non-profit association established to commemorate the efforts of service people and civilians who defended northern Australia during World War Two work to raise awareness of this chapter in Australia’s history and comprises veterans, their families and friends.

“In 1942 the Port of Darwin was a major allied base and crowded with Australian and American ships and planes.” Mr. Delahunty said.

“But 69 years ago tomorrow, the small town of only 2,000 people fell victim to Australia’s first foreign enemy attack.”


In a speech to those who joined the commemoration, Mr. Delahunty spoke of the horrific events that took place during the first bombing.

“The Japanese air-raid on Darwin came early on February 19 1942 and within 40 minutes the first raid was over, killing hundreds of people and wounding many more.” Mr. Delahunty said.

“Eight of the 47 ships in the harbour were sunk, the Post Office demolished, and the hospital bombed.”

“In total, 683 bombs were dropped on Darwin that day.” Mr. Delahunty said.

Mr. Delahunty said these raids were the first of over 60 Japanese air-raids in eighteen months. The last took place on November 12 1943.

“Today we honour all who fought in Australia’s defence and all who gave their lives in these terrible attacks, most who were ill-equipped to properly defend themselves or their country.” Mr. Delahunty said.

“I am proud to join the Darwin Defenders and their families and friends today to honour the spirit and sacrifice of all who fought, and, indeed everyone who has defended this great Nation.”

“Their heroic efforts will never be forgotten.” Mr. Delahunty said.