Topic: Naval Heritage and History

Commemorating 1942, the Royal Australian Navy's darkest year

This article has photo gallery Published on by Mr John Perryman (author), LSIS Paul McCallum (photographer)

HMAS Perth (I) was a modified Leander Class Light Cruiser which commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in 1939. (photo: UNKNOWN)

HMAS Perth (I) was a modified Leander Class Light Cruiser which commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in 1939.

During 2017 the Royal Australian Navy will pause to commemorate a number of significant 75th anniversaries as it focuses on what was, arguably, the Navy’s darkest year: 1942.

AK-47s seized by HMAS Darwin presented to Memorial

This article has photo gallery Published on by Department of Defence (author), ABIS Sarah Ebsworth (photographer)

Commander Phillip Henry, RAN, Commanding Officer of HMAS Darwin and LEUT James Hodgkinson (left), Boarding Officer HMAS Darwain hand over weapons seized by HMAS Darwin on Op MANITOU to Nick Fletcher at the Australian War Memorial. (photo: Fiona Silsby)

Commander Phillip Henry, RAN, Commanding Officer of HMAS Darwin and LEUT James Hodgkinson (left), Boarding Officer HMAS Darwain hand over weapons seized by HMAS Darwin on Op MANITOU to Nick Fletcher at the Australian War Memorial.

Two AK-47s seized by the Royal Australian Navy during Operation MANITOU were presented to the Australian War Memorial to maintain the historic record of Defence’s contributions in the Middle East.

Birthday battle ensign hoisted in Parramatta

This article has photo gallery Published on by LEUT Gary McHugh (author), ABIS Richard Cordell (photographer)

HMAS Parramatta flies her Battle Ensign at sunset to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Australian White Ensign. (photo: ABIS Richard Cordell)

HMAS Parramatta flies her Battle Ensign at sunset to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Australian White Ensign.

Usually birthdays take a back seat in the middle of a multi-national war-fighting exercise, but the birthday of a Navy and the flag under which she serves is the exception.

Patrol boat salutes sailors on eternal patrol

This article has photo gallery Published on by CMDR Fenn Kemp (author), LSIS James Whittle (photographer)

Members of HMAS Maryborough conduct a memorial service for the 75th Anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Perth II and USS Houston, in the Sunda Strait, Indonesia, during a South East Asia Deployment. (photo: LSIS James Whittle)

Members of HMAS Maryborough conduct a memorial service for the 75th Anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Perth II and USS Houston, in the Sunda Strait, Indonesia, during a South East Asia Deployment.

The crew of the Darwin-based patrol boat, HMAS Maryborough, have marked the 75th anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Perth (I), with a midnight ceremony over the wreck in the Sunda Strait.

Enter ‘The Badger’

Published on by POIS Phil Cullinan (author)

Paul Burnett holds HMAS Katoomba's badge. (photo: Dept of Defence)

Paul Burnett holds HMAS Katoomba's badge.

Since the birth of the Royal Australian Navy, all ships and establishments have had a badge to represent them, from HMAS Australia’s crown on a federation star to the new destroyer, Hobart, it all comes down to one position.

Singapore sailor 'knew the end was nigh'

This article has photo gallery Published on by CPL Max Bree (author and photographer), Calvin Wong (photographer)

World War 2 veteran Derek Holyoake at the Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial, following at a national commemorative service to mark the 75th Anniversary of the Fall of Singapore. Mr Holyoake served aboard HMAS Hobart and saw action off Singapore. (photo: Corporal Max Bree)

World War 2 veteran Derek Holyoake at the Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial, following at a national commemorative service to mark the 75th Anniversary of the Fall of Singapore. Mr Holyoake served aboard HMAS Hobart and saw action off Singapore.

A white flag and Union Jack accompanied Britain’s Lieutenant General Arthur Percival as he was escorted through Japanese lines to sign the surrender of Singapore’s Commonwealth forces on 15 February 1942.

Wartime losses bridge generations and distance

This article has photo gallery Published on by POIS Phil Cullinan (author)

The Perth/Amphion bell was retrieved from Perth's wreck by an Indonesian diving team in 1974 and subsequently presented to the Australian Government by the Indonesian Government. (photo: POIS Phil Cullinan)

The Perth/Amphion bell was retrieved from Perth's wreck by an Indonesian diving team in 1974 and subsequently presented to the Australian Government by the Indonesian Government.

The loss of HMAS Perth and USS Houston in the Second World War was one of many tragic events that forged the relationship between the United States and Australian navies.

Wyatt Earp continuing mission

This article has photo gallery Published on by SBLT Samuel Penfold (author), LCDR Michael Kumpis (photographer), Ms Nisha Harris (photographer)

Antarctic Survey Vessel Wyatt Earp passing an iceberg in Antarctica. (photo: LCDR Michael Kumpis)

Antarctic Survey Vessel Wyatt Earp passing an iceberg in Antarctica.

The Royal Australian Navy's Antarctic Survey Vessel Wyatt Earp is currently conducting surveying operations based out of Davis, one of Australia’s Antarctic Stations.

Huon pine delivers century of service

This article has photo gallery Published on by Department of Defence (author)

Former HMAS Riawe was built in 1912 as a workboat, and requisitioned into the Naval Auxiliary Patrol in 1942. She was acquired most recently in 2004 and at that time was believed to be Australia’s oldest working fishing boat. (photo: Unknown)

Former HMAS Riawe was built in 1912 as a workboat, and requisitioned into the Naval Auxiliary Patrol in 1942. She was acquired most recently in 2004 and at that time was believed to be Australia’s oldest working fishing boat.

A patrol boat that was already 30 years old when it was acquired for war service is still going strong - 104 years after its construction.

Cook’s heroic sacrifice saved many

This article has photo gallery Published on by LCDR Desmond Woods (author)

Leading Seaman Francis Emms, who heroically fought back during the attack on Darwin Harbour in February 1942. (photo: Unknown)

Leading Seaman Francis Emms, who heroically fought back during the attack on Darwin Harbour in February 1942.

While Australians paused to commemorate the Bombing of Darwin recently, there was a particular Australian Navy sailor whose actions on 19 February 1942 were keenly remembered.