Category Survivor Stories

23 posts

A Christmas of Chaos – Corporal Allen Hancock, 125 Signal Squadron, Darwin

Christmas in Darwin was always something quite different from that experienced anywhere down south. There really was no ‘silly season’ as such, probably because the ‘silly season’ lasts twelve months up there. Before the introduction of Remote Locality Leave Travel, it was normal for personnel on a two-year posting to […]

Gary Gibson – The Darwin Disaster – Electronics Australia Magazine

The below files are copies of pages from the now no longer published Electronics Australia Magazine. The article outlines the role Myself and my wife along with the many Australian Amateur radio operators played in the immediate post cyclone communications out of Darwin. We moved from Darwin to Northern NSW […]

Valda Lefebvre – Our Wedding Anniversary

My husband Lou and I had only arrived in Darwin 6 months before Cyclone Tracy with our three little sons, Justin, four years old, and twins Shannon and Paul, three years old. We had settled happily in our Thornton Crescent, Moil home, a very sturdy home built by Watkins Builders […]

Robert and Mary Fox – An Account of Cyclone Tracy

This is not my story but that written by late wife, Mary Fox, shortly after Cyclone Tracy. It is the personal account of our experience during and immediately after CT. Mary passed away on 30 May 2022. Robert Fox An Account of Cyclone Tracy by Mary Fox, January 1975.   […]

Lorraine Dickson – Cyclone Tracy and Evacuation

At the time of Cyclone Tracy I was living as a young Army wife in Larrakeyah Barracks where my husband was posted. I was in the early months of my first pregnancy and working as a Community Nurse based at the Parap Centre. At the time of Tracy I was […]

Darwin 1974 & a Letter Sent the Next Day – Frances Marilyn Roberts

I flew, with our four children, to Darwin on 2 November 1974, my birthday, with a couple of suitcases, just clothes, bedding and a few bits and pieces. The rest of our belongings were very few and arranged to be delivered in about 2 months. John had secured a home […]

David Curtis’s story

By Christmas 2024, it will be the 50th Anniversary of Cyclone Tracy, the fiercest and most destructive cyclone that destroyed Darwin. Here is our story of escape and survival of Cyclone Tracy. At the time, my wife Penelope and I were staying with my wife’s parents, Colin and Clara Royes, […]

My recollections of Cyclone Tracy Christmas 1974 by Grahame Stewart

Each year during “Cyclone Season” (November to February) every week or two we would listen to the “Woomp Woomp Woomp Cyclone Alert ! Cyclone Alert !” on radio and television until most people including Velia (my wife) and I just became very complacent. In fact 3 weeks before Tracy I […]

Demolished homes in Darwin on the cover of Cyclone! Christmas in Darwin 1974.

The Christmas Santa Never Came – Beth

The Christmas Santa Never Came (Santa never came, instead Tracey came) Christmas eve 1974 had more than the usual anticipation. Cyclone warnings had beenblaring on the hour all day. We could almost say it off by heart, but did not really thinkall the precautions would be necessary. After all we […]

Still here – Just! – Tim West

A lifetime spent in the Top End is full of near death experiences ‘NDEs’ but the one that holds the most vivid and emotional memories is that night in ’74 that stole my childhood innocence and changed my World view forever!

Cyclone – Paul Bayetto

It was busy in the restaurant that night. Why wouldn’t it be? It was Christmas Eve. Insults and instructions were flying across the room in rapid staccato Italian. “Porca miseria Paulo! Tu idiota, rapido! Portare la lattuga fretta!” Pop yelled at me as I turned steaks on the grill and […]

The Evacuation – Robyn Mackenzie

Wondering if anyone can remember being evacuated from Darwin on a commercial flight that departed about 4pm on 26 December 1974? My baby daughter and I were evacuated on 26 December on what I’m pretty sure was Ansett VH-RMW B727-277. The flight went via Mt Isa to Brisbane. Ron Cuskelly […]

Christmas Eve 1974 – Cathryn Doney

My story is not particularly spectacular, and no different from anyone else who went through that black, howling, ripping wind. There were 7 of us kids, ranging from 15 to 3. I remember I’d spent the day, Christmas Eve, picking up rubbish from the yard and putting stuff inside, but […]

Survived a night of Hell – Kathy Shepherd

It was a very uneventful Christmas morning, my husband was at work and I was home with my two young daughters doing the usual shopping, cleaning and preparing food for the Christmas feast. The weather at the time wasn’t unusual for this time of the year, so I paid it […]

Cyclone Tracy – Graeme Gilder

I had this 20 acre block in Darwin, or actually 21 miles out of the city centre, and on holidays and other opportunities I would go up there from Kununurra and do some work on it with the idea of one day moving to Darwin and building there, if not it would still be a good investment.

My Cyclone Tracy Story – Sean Kennedy

Christmas Eve 1974. I was 3 years and 24 days exactly, just a child, even a toddler, but that night and the days following are burned into my brain the way that nothing else in my life has ever done.

How My Family Was Affected – Tracey Collins

It was Christmas Eve and we were all excited as we would be leaving for a trip by car to Queensland early in the morning. As we were leaving early on Christmas day we had decided to open our Christmas presents that night.

A Step Back in Time – Gail McNamee

My name is Gail McNamee; I grew up in Darwin, I  experienced cyclone Tracy’s devastation on Darwin on Christmas Eve, of 1974. TRACY Distinctly I remember the one night in December, Hells wrath fell from the heavens and struck upon our shore, First the calm before the storm, a soft […]