Monday, 9 May 2005

YESTERDAY WE LOST A FRIEND, A GOOD FRIEND.

This may not be important to most people.
However, To my friends and associates of the HMS King George V Assoc,
FREDERICK HALLIDAY (FRED) was a real Friend, a Mate and pleasant to the extreme, who will be sorely missed by us, and most of all by Freds dear lady Betty, to whom on behalf of the assoc, we send our deepest condolences.
I first met Fred when he was stoking the donkey boiler (Hot water supply) on the jetty at Liverpool England, when our ship the large Battleship HMS King George V was refitting while in the dry dock.
It was during WW2, when most of us were just young boys on joining the ship, but matured to the extreme by the end of hostilities. Most had served three or more years in the Royal Navy and by then had reached the ripe old ages between nineteen and twenty two. I joined at 15 and 5 months on 7-1- 42.
Many years later an association was formed in Australia by former crew members of this famous ship that served with distinction both in Europe and in the Pacific areas of conflict.
Several calls into Sydney for replenishment and r&r became the motivation for members of the crew to migrate to Australia.
It was in 1998 that I was contacted, and after a gap of 53 years became re-introduced to several ex ship mates; some whom I recognised immediately, Fred was one of them. At that time there were about 35 ex crew living in Australia (at least) but an estimation put the original number to exceed 100 or 7% of the original crew. Sadly as I write we are only able to muster 22 members, widows boost our numbers of the assoc to around 50.
There were an estimated 47,000 navy persons serving in the Pacific fleet alone, that could possibly indicate using 7% as a guide, 3,500 may have returned to Australia.
Why did we return? you may well ask, the answer is simply, that, Australia is a beautiful country, Lets all keep it that way.
Vale Fred.

6 comments:

Vest said...

Fred Halliday my friend and good mate will be interred at the Pitt Town Cemetery, after the conclusion of the funeral service 1030 am Frid-13-May-05 at St James Anglican church, Bathurst st, Pitt Town. Near Windsor in NSW.
My wife and I will attend together With Freds relatives, friends and old shipmates from the past, to wish Fred "Bon Voyage".

golden oldie said...

I dont think that there were many pommie ships here during ww2, I think your wrong sport with your figures.

Vest said...

Thank you for your comment golden oldie
I am reminded of the ex german ww2 soldier who arrived here as a migrant,joined the Australian Army fought in Korea and at age 72 received the Aus medical Gold Card, which poms do not qualify for, despite fighting with aus forces during ww2.
The ex hun fighting on the other side against us during ww2 must be considered more worthy.

Vest said...

Golden oldie. You may be correct in stating my figures were incorrect, then again they were only estimates, judge for your self. The British pacific Fleet,1944-1946 during max build up, only you might say, consisted of 4, 40,000 ton battleships
5, large fleet Aicraft Carriers
4, Melbourne type Aircraft carriers
1, repair A/C Carrier
8, escort A/C Carriers
10,Heavy & Light Cruisers
40,Destroyers. 2,Depot ships.
13, Frigates, 29, Submarines.
3, Sub depot ships.
15,Minesweepers
18 Sloops and many other vessel like Tankers, supply and other misc ships. The East Indies Fleet consisted of a similar number of ships. more info to come later.

Vest said...

More info is available, by mailing your stamped and addressed envelope to, Vest B P F Ships,
P O BOX 250, Budgewoi, NSW. 2262. I will provide at my expense a 4 page printout giving details of every ships category name etc, this may surprise the sceptics.

Vest said...

There will be a parade and service to honour the men of the the British Pacific and East Indies Fleets, In Sydney on Wednesday-31st August-2005. It is hoped that 170 members from Great Britain will Attend.
Jim Seager, Of the Royal Naval Assoc, has been informed that our K G V Assoc will attend, hopefully with 14 men. Other ship associations should boost the numbers to the 100 plus. There may be others who were members of the BPF and East Indies fleets who are not affilliated to an assoc out there somewhere, if so, please come,it will be a great moment for all of us.
If attending, please Telephone, JIM SEAGER, Australia-02-98240833, RN Assoc,or Phil Tavender, Australia-02-98783412,KGV Assoc.

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