Join writer, historian and filmmaker Will Davies at Penshurst Branch Library when he introduces his new book, The Boy Colonel, the story of Lieutenant Colonel Douglas Marks who became a Colonel at just 22, the youngest battalion commander in the AIF in WW1 and highly regarded as a future leader. He returned to Australia after the war, aged 24 years, anticipating a bright future.
On the 25th January 1920 at Palm Beach, to the north of Sydney, the surf was wild. Two attempts had already been made to save a young woman caught in an undertow and dragged out when a young man – skinny, gangly and frail, and known to be a poor swimmer – threw off his coat and shoes and raced into the surf. As his fiancée and young nephew watched, the sea closed over him and he disappeared. His body was never recovered. This was the tragic fate of a gallant, highly decorated and promising young man named Douglas Gray Marks.
Will Davies works include Beneath Hill 60, a great Australian war story that was made into an award-winning film, Somme Mud: the war experiences of an Australian infantryman in France 1916-1919 and In the Footsteps of Private Lynch published to acclaim in Australia and the UK. Will’s talent is sharing the often unknown stories of the frontline, using personal letters and firsthand accounts to reveal the human faces of Australian soldiers.