Brief Stop at Benalla, Victoria

10 Jan

Uta’s Diary, January 2017

After we left Melbourne, Benalla was our first stop. We were on the way to a farmstead near Wangaratta to visit our grandson Tristan and his family.

Peter took the following six pictures during a brief stop at Benalla, Victoria.

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We were lucky, nothing bad happened to us. We just enjoyed the beautiful sight of it.

 

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From Wikipedia:
“Weary Dunlop Memorial Located within the Botanical Gardens and clearly visible from Bridge Street is the Weary Dunlop Memorial, a powerful statue depicting two Australian doctors (Dunlop being the standing one) helping a wounded and emaciated comrade. Cast in bronze and over 2 metres high it stands on a granite plinth with the words “compassion, integrity, forgiveness, humility, courage, leadership, friendship” engraved on the granite base. It was created by sculptor Louis Lauman to dramatically depict Dunlop’s work helping wounded and dying POWs. The sculpture was unveiled in 1996. Dunlop was both the commanding officer and surgeon for over 1,000 POWs on the Thai-Burma railway. You can read more about him singular life at http://www.awm.gov.au/encyclopedia/dunlop/bio/. The statue at Benalla is much better than the one depicted at the Australian War Memorial. There is also an excellent Visitor Guide available at the Visitor Information Centre. – See more at: http://www.aussietowns.com.au/town/benalla-vic#sthash.owRJLzR1.dpuf”

6 Responses to “Brief Stop at Benalla, Victoria”

  1. gerard oosterman January 11, 2017 at 7:44 am #

    I prefer the Canberra statue, Uta. The one in Benalla looks almost like a religious sculpture and in my mind seems a bit sentimental.( Like Jesus washing the feet of sinners or something.) The Canberra statue simple shows Dunlop as he was. A humble man with a sense of humour.

    • auntyuta January 11, 2017 at 3:07 pm #

      Thanks for commenting, Gerard. I would very much like to see the statue that is depicted at the Australian War Memorial to see the difference.
      So, Peter photographed Sculptor Louis Lauman’s statue at first from the front and then from the side. Of course, in the picture, that he took from the side, the lighting is much better. You say, Dunlop was a humble man with a sense of humor. However, I think it is probably true, that he was also a man with “compassion, integrity, forgiveness, humility, courage, leadership, friendship”.
      In Sir (Ernest) Edward “Weary” Dunlop’s biographical notes the following is said:
      “On 20 January 1943 he left Singapore for Thailand in charge of “Dunlop Force” to work on the Burma-Thailand railway. He remained there until the war ended, labouring tirelessly to save wounded, sick and malnourished men. Many times he put his own life at risk as he stood up to the brutality of his Japanese captors. Though not the only medical officer to act in this selfless way, his name was to become a legend among Australian prisoners of war and an inspiration for their own survival. Throughout his captivity and at great personal risk Dunlop recorded his experiences in his diaries.”

  2. gerard oosterman January 12, 2017 at 8:09 am #

    Yes, Uta. That is all true and all those qualities you mentioned doesn’t exclude him from being a humble man as well. Of course art is personal and different strokes for different folks. I prefer the Canberra statue. I feel the Benalla statue to be a bit over the top. Anyone who has taken an interest in Dunlop knows about his efforts and heroic deeds during the war and after it. I just read that his old son is now to be evicted from the family property. Apparently he signed up mortgages while unstable and he was taken advantage off. He signed up for over a dozen mobile phone plans while he doesn’t even have a mobile phone. His income is $300.-pension a fortnight!

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