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Mary Seah (1905– )
Mary Seah was known as the 'Angel of Changi'. Changi was a very bad prison camp in Singapore where many Australians were kept during the Second World War. They were given little food or medicine and Seah risked her life to help the prisoners-of-war for several years. She would go to the camp with her son, dressed up as a street seller, and offer items for sale to the Japanese guards. When they were busy looking at her goods, she would sneak food and medicine to the Australians. If she had been caught, she would have been killed. When the guards became suspicious, she was beaten up, but she told the guards nothing and kept on helping the Australians. Many of the men would have died without her brave work.
Mary Seah is highly respected by the returned soldiers and has been guest of honour at some of their celebrations. She was made a Member of the Order of Australia in 1996.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|