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By Vikki Petraitis

In the early Nineteen Fifties, Rod Braybon's father died, leaving his mom with 8 youngsters she could not care for.

As a ward of the kingdom, Rod ended up on the infamous Bayswater Boys' domestic, run via the Salvation military, close to Melbourne.

Rod persevered years of ill-treatment by the hands of the Salvation military, then spent an entire life repressing the stories that haunted him.

Finally, after seeing an editorial in a newspaper, Rod determined to talk out.

His tale created a nation-wide sensation and gained a prestigious award for the journalist who broke it.

That Rod was once prepared to talk out to attempt and simplicity the ache of others like him, is incredible.

That he survived in any respect, is little short of a miracle.

This brief tale is increased in Vikki's full-length publication Salvation.

Welcome to Crime Shots—short, sharp, real crime tales from Australia's previous and current.

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Sample text

Standing by the warmth of the fire, a conversation took place that ended with a clenched-fist vow. From that moment on, the boys would look out for each other. If anyone was touched, the rest of the group would dish out vengeance. Of course, they were talking about protecting themselves against other boys. They knew there was nothing they could do about the officers. That night, after dinner, Rod returned to his dormitory, and saw with relief that he and Mick had both been put in beds right down the other end, furthest away from Lieutenant Haywood's door.

Their new leader was Envoy Collins. After being allocated a new bed, Rod got ready for school, then stood again in stony silence with the others in the quadrangle for the bed-wetters' parade. When the whips and screams happened, Rod flinched and set his mind adrift so he didn't hear it. He thought of his boyhood farm; saw the river and the paddocks and, mostly, he felt peaceful. He pictured his father, his mother and his brothers and sisters at the dinner table, eating as much as they liked - fresh bread, roasting meat and vegetables, puddings - all smiling; all happy.

Twenty boys stood naked and pale in the dewy morning, shivering with cold and humiliation. Haywood left them there and returned to the dorm to order the rest of the children to make their beds and get dressed. He watched them strip and dress, and when that was over, marched everyone outside to the quad. Every resident of Bayswater was made to line up around the edge of the quadrangle, facing the naked boys. Lieutenant Haywood and Envoy Collins looked at the boys with unveiled disgust. 'These filthy little animals can't even get up to go to a toilet,' Haywood spat.

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