I’ve chosen these two photos for a variety of reasons. The first image is included because of the narrative quality.
This is the first photo of dad with his sergeant’s stripes. He is on the troop ship named Staffordshire and its September 1948. I’d previously missed this and assumed he received these early on in Malaya.
I’ve selected the second image for wholly different reasons. Here the viewer can really see dad’s eyes and he connects in a much more personal way than in many other photos. Of course there is loads of unwitting testimony within the frame: his bedblock, kitbag and names and number, the tent surroundings along with his shirtless pose all provide a sense of place while the soft form of the photo and his hair provide a sense that this is an old photo.
Dad would have been about 21 years old when this was taken around the last quarter of 1948.