Getting Division, for the final time

Published on LEUT Byron Nalty (author), LSIS Dove Smithett (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Cerberus, Vic

Topic(s): HMAS Cerberus

Getting Division, General Entry 313 at the divisions building of Recruit School, HMAS Cerberus, Victoria. (photo: ABIS Dove Smithett)
Getting Division, General Entry 313 at the divisions building of Recruit School, HMAS Cerberus, Victoria.

The last Getting Division, GE313, will march into Royal Australian Navy history on 26 July 2013, as they proudly graduate from the Royal Australian Navy Recruit School at HMAS Cerberus

Family and friends will watch as the new recruits close the chapter on the first stage of their training and take the next step toward their careers within Navy. The graduation of the last Getting Division will be reviewed by the Deputy Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral Michael van Balen, RAN.

Getting Division was first established in 1961 and named in honour of Captain Frank Edmond Getting, who was captain of HMAS Canberra (I) while she came under long-range torpedo fire from several Japanese cruisers on 9 August 1942.

Canberra (I) suffered extensive damage and Captain Getting was severely wounded yet remained at his post, refusing medical treatment. He was subsequently evacuated to an American Hospital ship but later died of his wounds and was buried at sea.

In August 2013, Getting Division will be renamed Emms Division in honour of Leading Seaman Francis Bassett Emms, a leading cook aboard HMAS Kara Kara (I) during the Japanese air raids on Darwin on 19 February 1942. Despite a severe stomach wound, Emms manned a machine gun throughout the raid. It was only at the end that the extent of Emms injuries was realised. He was transported to the hospital ship Manunda but died enroute.

The Commanding Officer of the Boom Defence Squadron noted that Emms “probably saved the ship and many of the ship’s company.”

Emms received a posthumous Mention in Dispatches and his actions have been favourably compared with those of a Royal Navy sailor, Leading Seaman Jack Mantle, who received a posthumous Victoria Cross after defending his ship against air attack in 1940.

Getting Division has a proud history of 52 years as the foundation for thousands of naval careers. To commemorate the history of Getting Division, Commander Nye, Commanding Officer of the RAN Recruit School, extends an invitation to all former Getting graduates and staff to attend the graduation parade at HMAS Cerberus for intake GE313 on 26 July. For further information please contact LEUT Byron Nalty on 03 5931 5749 or email