Dasher: The Kevin Wheatley VC Story
I’m just reaching out about a terrific book ‘Dasher’ written by author Michael C Madden is the story of one of our national VC treasures. Michael has made it his mission to bring Kevin Wheatley, VC’s story; and we are so very proud to have published this really amazing, big hearted story.
Big Sky Publishing is thrilled to be publishing Dasher: The Kevin Wheatley VC Story, (November 2021) and to have sold Audio rights for the book to Wavesound, Australia. Kevin ‘Dasher’ Wheatley VC is one of the most extraordinary characters in Australian history, and although he is one of the most famous Victoria Cross recipients of all time, his story has never been fully told. Until now
Please find additional information below. Would you be interested in interviewing Michael Madden on this wonderful Australian hero?
Points of Interest
- Kevin ‘Dasher’ Wheatley VC is one of the most extraordinary characters in Australian history.
- One of the most famous Victoria Cross recipients of all time, his story has never been fully told. Until now. Foreword was written by Keith Payne VC
- After 56years the Wheatley family will finally receive Dasher’s American Silver Star award – to be presented by the Governor-General on 14 December, American Embassy, Canberra
- Trailer can be viewed here
“As a champion of great Australian authors and stories, Big Sky Publishing is very proud to be bringing Kevin ‘Dasher’ Wheatley’s remarkable story to life in audio and paperback. It stands as a poignant example of the valour, comradeship, sacrifice and tragedy of war which will have broad appeal.” Said Denny Neave Director at Big Sky Publishing.
‘Dasher’ was written by author Michael C. Madden with the support of the Wheatley family, friends and those that fought with him. Foreword was written by Keith Payne VC and on the 14th of December, the Governor-General will finally, 56 years after his many acts of heroism, award Dashers family with the international award of bravery the American Silver Star at the American Embassy in Canberra. The publication date for the book is 4 November 2021
Everyone who met the man has a Dasher Wheatley story of larrikin behaviour, outstanding soldiering, stunning valour, or all three. It is our great pleasure to have his story published in paperback and audio for people everywhere to discover this amazing man.
Madden’s previous title ‘Australia Remembers – Victoria Cross’ was extremely well received within Australia and Internationally. Michael is a supporter of a number of charities and his royalties for this title were donated to the TPI Victoria for their members, families and the veteran community.
Big Sky Publishing focuses on Australian Authors and Australian Stories supporting emerging authors and illustrators across adult and children categories.
I recall as a 2 Cdo Coy (as it was back then) from WcWhae Ave. Ripponlea, Vic. choco 21 yo L/Cpl having weekend leave from a Stickies course at PTF Williamtown. We came down with one of the PJIs WO Ken Stoker (what a character) and were let loose in the Big Smoke on a Sunday arvo. We fronted at a soldiers’ pub, the Civic. A young soldier at the door said, just a minute and called out to the Dasher – these blokes are Commandos from Melbourne doing a jumps course at Williamtown, is it alright to let em in? Sure, said Dasher and we were made welcome. The point is, I doubt that either the soldier at the door or The Dasher had any real authority but such was the Dasher’s natural authority among the men that it was seen to be OK to admit us only if Dasher said it was alright. Such charisma. I have never forgotten. We were and are, all the poorer for his loss
Dasher Wheatley was a previous member of 1 RAR, prior to transferring to AATTV – where his heroic action of staying with his mate, to the death, won him the Victoria Cross. Keith Payne also told of the repugnant DVA questioning Dasher’s ‘right’ to the Victoria Cross – as if THEY had any right to query the TRUE story.
A true Australian Larkin and a soldier to his boot straps. Dasher set Integrity into stone and held it fast.
Dasher served in various Battalions of the Royal Australian Regiment during his Army service. I knew him over
several years in the Regiment where he was popular with his fellow soldiers and well accepted by all ranks.
My recollections of Dasher are that he was a good,tough,Infantry soldier in the field. He was also a good athlete
on the sports ground.
I believe that all soldiers who served with Dasher would respect him.