Sandakan Prisoner of War MemorialPrint Page Print this page

23-April-2019 [Sandra Brown]
23-April-2019 [Sandra Brown]

Photographs supplied by Roger Johnson / Sandra Brown

The monument was erected by Sandakan Memorial Foundation to commemorate the 1800 members of the 8th Division AIF who died at Sandakan and Ranau in North Borneo (now the Malaysian state of Sabah) and during the infamous “death marches” between the two prison camps between 1942 and 1945.

The memorial honours the men who enlisted from the southern region of New South Wales. The memorial was cast by local monumental masons, J. Shephard and Son.

All the Sandakan Memorials in the Eastern States take the form of a topographical scale model, cast in bronze, of a section of the Crocker Range in Sabah. A brass ribbon demonstrates the 265 kilometre route of the infamous death marches from Sandakan Camp westward to the village of Ranau in the foothills of Mt. Kinabalu.


Address:Baylis Street, Victory Memorial Gardens, Wagga Wagga , 2650
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -35.109444
Long: 147.370278
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Conflict
Actual Event STart Date:03-September-1939
Actual Event End Date:15-August-1945
Monument Manufacturer:J Shephard & Son


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Saturday 20th August, 1994
Front Inscription

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In memory of 1800 Australians of the 8th Division A.I.F. and 750 British troops. They fought gallantly in the defence of Malaya and Singapore during World War II. Following the fall of Singapore, they became prisoners of the Japanese and were transported to Sandakan in British North Borneo, now Sabah, in 1942 to construct an airfield, where 900 died of ill-treatment.

By the end of 1944, when Allied forces were within striking distance of Sandakan, the Japanese Command ordered the removal of prisoners inland to Ranau 165 miles (265 kilometres) west. On 29 January 1945, 470 prisoners guarded by 500 Japanese marched towards Ranau. Those unable to carry on were killed.

The second march comprising 532 prisoners left Sandakan on 29 May 1945, 183 arrived at Ranau on 26 June 1945. Only eight survived from the first march.

Of the 288 prisoners left at Sandakan there were no survivors.

On 1 August 1945, the surviving 22 prisoners at Ranau were massacred. Six who escaped were rescued by Special Forces.

This memorial honours those men who enlisted from the 
Southern Region of New South Wales.

We will remember them
Sandakan Memorial Foundation

Left Side Inscription

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Back Inscription

This memorial was dedicated by Father John Brendan Rogers OFM Eighth Division A.I.F. Chaplain Sandakan and Kuching 

This memorial was unveiled by Hon. Con Sciacca, M.P. Minister for Veterans` Affairs
28th August, 1994.

Councillor P. Brassil  
Mayor of the City of Wagga Wagga

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Right Side Inscription

The sculptured terrain of Sabah illustrates the route of the Death Marches, shown by a bronze ribbon between Sandakan and Ranau which was substantially swamp and dense jungle in 1945.

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Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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