IN 1942



Alan Bruce Samuels (WX30841) was an Army Signaller in a Coast Watch position about 100kms north of Broome prior to the first Japanese air raid in March 1942. Alan Samuels was in Broome for that bombing raid, and had the unenviable task of recovering bodies from the harbour for interment in the Broome cemetery. He is not recorded on any records as having been in Broome at the time.

One morning in 1942, at their Coast Watch position 100 kms north of Broome, they observed about 30 Japanese Marines engaged in activities on the beach about a mile from their concealed position. The Japanese left the beach in small boats at the end of the day and disappeared over the horizon where, presumably they were picked up by a ship, or submarine. Signalman Alan Samuels then sent a signal to Broome reporting what they had seen. Some Army Intelligence Officers arrived a day or two later, and Signalman Samuels and his fellow Coast Watchers led them down to where they had observed the Japanese. They uncovered a cache of supplies and equipment all with Japanese markings.

The Intelligence Officers took the supplies and equipment away with them for further examination, and before they left they took the trouble to remind Signalman Samuels and his fellow soldiers about their obligations under the official Secrets Act. Alan Samuels kept his oath until he was about 70, when he told his son Geoff Samuels of this event.

Alan Samuels was also present when Jack Palmer came into the C.O.'s office in Broome with the diamonds he had "salvaged" from the downed Dutch DC-3 in Carnot Bay.

In the early 1970's, Geoff Samuels worked with a bloke named Jack Veall, who was a Coast Watch officer operating out of Darwin. He skippered a small lugger and delivered supplies to the Nackeroos who were scattered across the Top End. He had an aboriginal crew, and they learned from their family and friends that the Japanese has come ashore in many places, and had sought information and directions from them, and gave them some supplies and equipment to keep them on-side. Jack told Geoff Samuels he had seen the physical evidence of their visits in the form of ration packs, discarded equipment, etc. Jack died many years ago.



I'd like to thank Geoff Samuels for his assistance with this webpage.


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 Peter Dunn 2015


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This page first produced 16 January 2017

This page last updated 16 January 2017