A Semi -Regular Photo Blog about Life in Northern New South Wales, Australia.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

An Utter Tragedy

Two weeks before Christmas, at the height of WW2, a party of Boy Scouts sailed across the Clarence River for Susan Island opposite the Grafton CBD. On the return journey a series of events resulted in the drowning deaths of 13 young boys. It is hard to recount the events of this tragedy, if you would like to read more click here for Peter Langston's poignant yet damning article.

Nine of the graves are located in the centre of the Old South Grafton Cemetery, high on the hill and away from the river in which they drowned. There is also a small memorial in the Boulevard Gardens overlooking the site of the catastrophe.


  1. found your blog while searching for something totally unrelated this morning!
    I think that tragedy will always be a sad part of Grafton's heritage.

    1. Glad you found me Deanne, thanks for the visit.

  2. I lived in Grafton for many years and did not know about this tragedy.
    I did know that the river could be very treacherous and not to be taken lightly.
    Thank you for posting!

  3. What a tragic story, all those youg lives lost.

  4. What a tragic story, thoser poor boys and their families.

    Herding Cats

  5. yes, 'be prepared' indeed. what a tragedy for all.

  6. 24 hours of justice, eh? And no one held responsible? And we are only talking 1943.

    29 cubs under the wing of a 17 yo oall afternoon on an island. That is simply not on. Never was, never will be. Makes me more and more convinced that all the changes to child-care, especially, the decrease of numbers per educator, should come in regardless of the cost.

    People can be heroes, yet still be held responsible. I wonder what became of the three young men who were sorely tested that afternoon?


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