5RAR Book Reviews Page
 

 

STARLIGHT

Author: Dr. Tony White AM

Reviewed By Book Blurb & Robert 'Dogs' Kearney


The duties and life of a frontline Australian doctor in the Vietnam War (5 RAR 1966/67). STARLIGHT was the radio call sign for army doctors and medics. Vivid recollections of author's 12 month tour of duty as a frontline doctor in difficult territory. Born in Australia, reared in Kenya, Africa, and educated in England and Australia with a medical degree from Sydney University, the author was Mentioned in Dispatches during the war, is still a medical practitioner specialising in remote areas and skin diseases in the Pacific Islands, and assists the Royal Flying Doctor Service. He was made a member of The Order of Australia in 2009.

Book Cover: StarlightVietnam was Australia's longest and most controversial war. This book vividly recalls the Author's 12 month tour of duty as a frontline doctor in difficult territory. Starlight was the radio call sign for army doctors and medics.

For those who were there, this book will surely refresh memories, good and bad, of those days of conflict. For those who weren't there, Tony White has painted the scenes skillfully with his letters home from the warfront, and connecting stories.

I commend strongly his story to all as an outstanding account of the duties and life of a frontline Australian doctor in the Vietnam War.

Major-General WB Digger James AC MBE MC MBBS

When I think of the solid service, patient endurance, steady courage in the face of danger and the basic decency and dependability of the ordinary Australian soldier, I'm intensely proud to have 'been there and done that' in such company.

Tony White

From Robert (Dogs) Kearney 5RAR 1st Tour and author of Silent Voices and co-author of Crossfire and Flashback, Echoes from a Hard War wrote:

Ted

this is a great read mate- I could hardly put it down; read it in two sittings.

I highly recommend it to every member of the battalion and their families; it is an easy read that covers the personal side of a son, brother, and young doctor at war.

Through sharing his letters, thoughts, fears and use of black humour as well as his practical methods of dealing with stress, Tony has produced a wonderful book; I will revisit it from time to time to subdue my own dragons.

Doc’s honest caring for the diggers comes through in his clear and descriptive sharing of the events of 66-67 many we as diggers didn’t know about but others in which we were the players. His use of personal family letters brings an immediacy that can’t be squeezed from a fading memory.

This book will be read by a diverse range of people but especially his and our grandchildren, great grandchildren etc.

I am sure it will become mandatory reading for RMC, and AAMC; it will always be a valuable reference for young green Army doctors.

This is definitely one for the website mate.

Best wishes to you your family and all the tigers family.

Dogs

(Left to Right) 'Doc' White with Bob O'Neill who was the battalion's intelligence officer for most of the 1st tour.
Doc signing his book at the book launch.
Susie and Tassie Wass, with Shirley Warr at right.

STARLIGHT, ISBN 987 1 876344 689,

To contact the author or purchase the book, please go to www.starlightbook.com.au

BACK TO BOOK REVIEWS | BACK TO CONTENTS PAGE