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Thomas Maxwell Boyd

Photograph of Thomas Maxwell Boyd crossing the Equator. The Charging Ceremony before being dunked by King Neptune. November 12th 1941.
On board T.S.S. Maetsuycker. K.P.M. 
Commander J.M. van Noorden. 

Photo taken by: Bob Johnston.

Thomas Maxwell Boyd crossing the Equator 12/11/1941

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    • Served as a Flight Rigger in the Pacific War.

      Excerpt Thomas Maxwell Boyd's Singapore Diary 'Singapore Saga'. Page 43-47 AWMM
    • February 11th 1942
      The town was a scene of indescribable destruction. The docks, when we arrived, were even worse. I had a terrible time getting off the shore and onto the boat in-between raids. It was the 'Empire Star' we were to board. In front of it was a gunboat armed with Bofors anti-aircraft gun. The gunners were doing a magnificent job. I saw two dive bombers shot down into the sea, hardly two hundred feet away. One of them had the tail clean shot off. At the foot of the ladder, up the side, was the ship's Officer. He told us, if we were able to get aboard and then two decks up, we would be safe except in the case of a direct hit. As those two dive bombers started their run, I was on the wharf, and so quickly did I scale that ladder and then two decks above, that I was in time to see them shot down. On the way up, another Ship's Officer took my rifle, to be stored in the hold.

      On the ship, we are subjected to continual bombing raids. Waves of twenty seven. How that number pounds in my brain. We were crowded with service and civilian escapees of all sorts. It is too late to call them evacuees - it is pitiful. Never before have I seen such stark terror. Just along a bit, there is a milling crowd of civilians all hoping for a miracle to save them. To view this is absolutely soul destroying. The last hours of singapore are definitely here. It's now 4 o'clock in the afternoon, and the Japanese are now in the Botanical Gardens. Too close. It's now six, and we are leaving, and it's slowly getting dark. We are going to be allowed on deck, when we are out of machine gun range. We are moving fast. I am upon the hundred thousand and million dollar fire. The great fire of Singapore. The great sacrifice of a hundred thousand Britishers. The myth of invincibility is gone. How can a hundred thousand men, poorly armed, stop the surging might of an Empire armed to the teeth? The hitherto despised Japanese Empire, now proving itself to be one of the greatest nations of all time. The China Incident was but a practise field. In the East, we are outmanoevered, out gunned. Our Navy is too small, but is doing an heroic and superman task. I fear it will be too much for them. The Convoy before ous lost four out of five ships. I wonder what will happen to us? The decks of our ship are crowded with mankind teaming everywhere like ants. There must be three thousand of them. It is impossible to move. I have found a spot to sleep on the stern. Public - Sue - Child - 22 April 2018 - Family History
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Maumahara Thomas Maxwell Boyd mā te whakatakoto i te papi

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23 Mahuru 2018SueWanganui New ZealandChild

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