The first series of IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS will be 10 one-hour episodes. In each episode viewers will join a descendant of our veterans is they take an uniquely personal journey of discovery - literally walking in their forebears' footsteps - to learn what their loved ones endured as they served our nation.
The first episode features searcher, Julie Bryce, as she retraces the remarkable experiences of her great uncle Tommy Johnson, who survived the sinking of the HMAS Perth only to suffer the horrors of the Thai-Burma Railway, then another hellish trip to Japan, during which he was again shipwrecked, to be taken to a POW camp in Tokyo, then to meet an astonishing fate.
Subsequent episodes will take us to the sacred shore at Gallipoli, to the killing fields of the WWI's Western Front in France, up the deadly Kokoda Track, to relive Spitfire dogfights over Malta, the secret world of the Z Specials in Borneo, the terrifying bombing raids on Darwin and to Vietnam and Korea.
Patrick conceived the format for IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS as he watched the growing number of Australians who were making pilgrimages to honour their forebears to iconic battle sites like the Kokoda Track, to Gallipoli, Fromelles and Villers-Bretonneux.
"I firmly believe that you can't know where you're heading unless you know where you've come from," Patrick said. "The service and sacrifice of our veterans is deeply embedded in our national DNA and a growing number of Australians want to find out more about their stories.
"IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS will give all Australians the chance to watch over the searchers' shoulders s they make their emotional journeys. Each family's story reveals the devastating impact of war on those who stayed at home and waited and it traces the impact on subsequent generations."
Shine Australia is producing IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS. The Executive Producer is Michael Caulfield (Australians At War) and the Series Producer is former ABC and 60 Minutes' Producer, Jonathan Harley.