The Magic of Life!
This is Jim's
Story - the story of a well-known Australian 1950's entertainer who
contracted the life threatening polio virus when at the height of his
public popularity. This is the story of his fight to survive. A controversial
autobiography which also provides valuable information for those seeking
quality in their lives.
Jim Vickers-Willis reveals his life - starting life as an immigrant,
becoming a young journalist, to flying Spitfires in WW2; then becoming
a household name as Australia's BOOM Square Dance caller; to his imprisonment
in an iron lung and then his fight to live; to entertaining children
on early Australian television; then, authoring a 'relationship"
best seller; to making a film about nudists, including 250 people square
dancing in the nude; and, then passing a University course....... aged
story but also one that reveals many valuable clues on how to survive
the challenges that life throws at each and everyone of us.
THE IRON LUNG could have been the title of Jim's book. It surprisingly
opens by taking us to Kenya, and the filming of little girls held down
by their 'loved ones' to be mutilated for life. In his personal escape
to life and love story, Jim equates this clitoral mutilation with the
results of what he calls 'psychological circumcision', going on almost
unnoticed and still happening to the young in our own society.
some quotes from Jim's 'Magic':
one thing giving young people information; it's another thing to pass
on an attitude.
What you get out of it depends on your attitude.
It applies to many things in life - particularly to sex.
Sitting on the bench watching all this was her younger sister,
looking terribly frightened - it was her turn next.
The rock band was wearing guitar straps -and nothing else.
'Magic of Life'
is available for purchase as an immediate manuscript download (Pdf format)
or by mail order as a hard cover book. Purchases can be made using the
shopping buttons at right.
we've also included some links to a number of other multi-media resources
on Jim's life. This includes his 40 minute 1996 interview on radio 3LO
with Doug Aiton. Here is one sample extract when Jim talks about polio
and his disability:
Aiton: How do you feel about being 78?
Jim: Well I'm delighted to
have reached it. When I had polio it was predicted I wouldn't pass 55.
Here I am having great fun, and you know, life couldn't be better. It's
wonderful. I have a wonderful wife - that's one of the main things.
But I also have 3 great children and 7 grandchildren, and its just wonderful.
Aiton: Has your disability impaired your enjoyment of life a great deal?
Jim: I don't think so. In some ways, it has contributed, because
its been a bit of an education for our young ones to have someone like
that around...[my grand kids] accept my disability.
Aiton: And you don't ever get angry about the fact that polio so cruelly
Jim: No. I was very lucky to get out of it [the iron lung].
I'm very lucky!
Indeed! But Jim and those close to him also know he wasn't alone - he
could not have achieved what he did without the love and care of his
life long partner Beth - the 'Number One' Lady in Jim's Square Dance
Exhibition Set, and herself the focus of public admiration for her courage,
determination and devotion in nursing Jim through the after effects
of polio whilst also coping with her three children's medical problems,
when aged only in her late twenties - in 1955, The Argus awarded Beth
"Mrs. Housewife of the Year", whilst the magazine Woman's
Day and Home wrote a lead article titled "The
Testing of Beth Vickers-Willis" (click to open Pdf of this
Here is a
potted summary of Jim's Story:
Mill Hill, England -16th July, 1918
Father: John Vickers Willis (Pa - Philosopher)
Mother: Mildred Amelia Whitcomb (Moppy)
Grandfather: Horace Whitcomb (Journalist)
Siblings: Eric, Les/Bill, Joan, Charles
Sponsored family migration to Australia 1925
Enlisted - 12 September 1941
Discharged - 20th February 1946
Diploma of Life Insurance (1964)
Diploma of Financial Planning (2000-Aged 82)
Married: Beth Parkinson (1947)
Children: Sue, Peter, Merle (fostered), Tony
Grandkids: Justin, Sascha, Lindy, Kellie,
Amber, Katy, Emily, Rebecca, Jareth, James
here to listen to Jim singing with his Grandchildren
Cadet Journalist - The Sun Herald (Melbourne)
WW2 Veteran: RAAF Instructor & Spitfire Pilot
Thirst Aid Mobile Canteens
Entertainer - Square Dance Caller/Instructor
Author- The Australian Standard Square Dance
Manufacturer - Baby Barriers
Entertainer - Puppet Pantomime
Manufacturer - Puppet Pantomime Sets
Manufacturer - Jack-in-the-Boxes
Life Insurance Representative & Certified Financial Planner (T&G,
Nat Mutual, AXA)
Sunday School Teacher (St.Leonards, Brighton)
Awarded 'Paul Harris Fellow' of Rotary International
The Magic of Life!
Are You (Really) Fun To Live With?
The War Diary
The Australian Standard Square Dance
Let's Get It All Off - For Goodness Sake (film)
Report/Talk on Sex (film)
Sexuality & Your Quality of Life (audio)
Female Sexual Expression (audio)
Male Sexuality (audio)
Square Dance at Home (audio)
Comprehensive sex education for all.
Australian withdrawal from Vietnam War
Legal nude bathing beaches
Foreshore bike paths
Australian Senate Candidate 1967
Election Platform:"Vote Us Out Of Vietnam"