Two days could not be more different. On Tuesday, on the manicured lawns of Government House on the banks of Lake Burley Griffin in Canberra, Ordinary Seaman Edward "Teddy" Sheean from Lower Barrington in Tasmania was awarded the Victoria Cross posthumously.
On this day in 1942, just before two o'clock in the afternoon, the 18-year-old went down with his ship, HMAS Armidale. As he died, he clung to his gun, choosing certain death to give his comrades a chance of life.
The Armidale had been hit by two torpedoes and a bomb from the air.
In the chaos of war, his ship-mates were in the water being strafed by Japanese fighters. But Ordinary Seaman Sheean disobeyed the order to abandon ship, strapped himself to a gun and fired back at the Japanese aircraft, before sinking beneath the waters of the Timor Sea.
Although wounded in the chest and back, he shot down one bomber and kept other aircraft away. He was seen still firing his gun as the Armidale slipped below the waves. Only 49 of the 149 men who had been on board survived.
His citation for the Victoria Cross says: "His preeminent act of valour and most conspicuous gallantry saved Australian lives."
In a quiet and solemn ceremony at Government House, his nephew Garry Ivory accepted the medal from the Governor-General.
Mr Ivory had campaigned for 32 years for his uncle's bravery to be recognised. In August, Prime Minister Scott Morrison recommended to the Queen a posthumous Victoria Cross after the recommendations of an independent inquiry.
Mr Ivory said he was choked when he was handed the medal in Canberra. "Teddy fired until his last breath," he said, "so I didn't give up and I wouldn't."
He said that when the campaign to have the seaman recognised seemed like it was going nowhere, he would look at a copy of a painting of those final moments and be inspired to continue campaigning.
Mr Sheean first read of his uncle's bravery in a book about the incident. From then on, he decided the deed should be recognised.
But it has been a long hard road with many twists and turns.
An inquiry in 2013 recommended against posthumously awarding the VC to the sailor.
Initially, Prime Minister Scott Morrison rejected the recommendation but then announced a panel of experts to review the matter. The panel came down in favour of the award and the matter then went to the Queen who agreed.
The result was the ceremony in Canberra, held under marquees on the lawn of Government House. A host of Ordinary Seaman Sheean's family were there, mixing with the top brass of the military.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison gave an address on video. A video was also shown of crew of HMAS Sheean (named after Teddy Sheean) casting a wreath on the ocean at the spot where the Armidale went down.
Mr Morrison said that Ordinary Seaman Sheean had chosen his path even though it would end in his own death. "Everything he did was deliberate," the Prime Minister said.
His example raised a question in Mr Morrison's mind: "How can we lead lives as meaningful, as selfless as courageous as young Teddy Sheean's?"