THE 1942 bombing of Darwin will be marked at a ceremony in Hamilton Hill on February 19, 2013.
The inaugural Bombing of Darwin Memorial Day, to be held at the Memorial Park and Field of Poppies on Spearwood Avenue, follows the Gillard government’s official recognition of the attack last year.
Two-hundred-and-forty-three died in the bombing, which occurred a little more than two months after Japan’s surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii.
“A lot of people don’t know about it and even people of my vintage know very little about it,” Cockburn RSL vice-president Arthur Stanton said.
“There was a lot secrecy at the time because the government didn’t want to create any panic.
“The federal government of the day didn’t want to acknowledge it as a war zone.
“It’s one of those stupid things in the history of our nation.
“I think it’s a very important day and there is a hell of history up there in Darwin,” Mr Stanton said.
by BRENDAN FOSTER