From Kevin Mulcahy, a blow in.
I arrived in Darwin in late February 1975 to lay the foundations for the Darwin reconstruction Commission, an organization charged by the Government to rebuild the city in a 5 year period. Needless to say I was stunned and shocked by what I saw of Darwin the day I arrived there. The devastation was enormous and my heart went out to those who weathered the storm and lost just about everything they owned. Much has been written and said about what Tracy did and the rebuilding problems so I won’t go into that here.
My main reason for posting here is to say what a pleasure it was, while I was in Darwin for 3 months, to have met and shared meals and drinks with Roger East. He was a journalist who went to Darin with Sir Leslie Thiess who was the Chairman of the interim Reconstruction Commission. Roger was his PR man and stayed on in that capacity for the permanent DRC. He was a freelance journo and he decided to write a book titled “Decisions in Crisis” which was aimed at the Federal Government for the manner in which they handled the whole Darwin situation after Tracy’s visit. He wrote about Stretton’s appointment, the establishment of the DRC, the permit system the evacuations and so on. Unfortunately his book was never finished as he left Darwin in September 1975 to go to East Timor to try and find out just what happened to his journalist friends who were the Balibo 5. Roger never returned to Australia either but at least they made a movie about him.