4 August 1942

This afternoon the signallers complete the telephone line from Moresby to Deniki, 106 km of cable through the jungle, across countless rivers and creeks and over the 2000 metre high Owen Stanley Range. At last the 39th at Deniki is in direct communication with their HQ.

Major Alan Cameron arrives to take temporary command of 39th Battalion. Aggressive by nature and a survivor of Lark Force after the garrison had been overwhelmed in Rabaul, he decides the young Diggers who were separated from main group after clashing with Japs at Oivi are “unreliable” - Army code for “likely to shoot through under fire”.

Their mates have no such qualms, knowing it was their baptism of fire and they were disoriented by the confusion of battle.