The Montevideo Maru Memorial Committee’s recent submission to the Federal Government mentioned that there is a small memorial plaque at the Brisbane General Post Office commemorating three Rabaul-based wireless technicians of the Postmaster-General’s Department who died on Montevideo Maru: Wilfred Leonard Duus of Brisbane; Hedley Turnbull of Laidley; and TM Plunkett. COLIN HUGGINS sallied forth in search of the plaque, and reported on the adventure.
The plaque - to find it....
John Holland, Brisbane PNGVR historian, did give me a pretty good clue about where to look, but initially I couldn’t find it, so around and around that building I went - almost into the restricted zone!
I ventured into the private mail boxes - all the time thinking, someone is going to pat me on the shoulder and ask what on earth I’m doing. Seems to prove that security isn't all it is beefed up to be. If anyone looks like a possible terrorist, I fit the bill.
However I had my story ready for them if patted on the shoulder - the 44 page Montevideo Maru submission to the Government.
Just as I was about to give up, I found it.
TAKEN PRISONERS OF WAR
WHILST ON DUTY
DIED IN ENEMY HANDS
WORLD WAR II – 1939-1945
The plaque is located on the right hand side of the building as you walk through to St Stephen's Cathedral - at the back of the front pillar.
I saw the very old paper seller at the front. He knew of the plaque, but had no idea what it represented. So I did my best to inform him. I spoke to a few other people, too.
So, hopefully, when they read something in the newspapers of the Montevideo Maru disaster, they will know what it is all about.