Some worked on the degaussing range assessing the magnetic attraction of vessels as they crossed the degaussing range ; they worked in ciphers; visual signalling; signals and communications; radio telegraphy plotting; and as messengers.
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They were at the Gunnery School, small arms range. One job was to handle all Safe Hand Mail for the port of Sydney, while another was to correct and issue charts to both merchant and naval ship's masters. Many WRANS were engaged on technical duties of a secret nature, working long hours under exacting conditions. For many, this meant absolute silence about their work, even after demobilisation, while the end of the war meant that others were released from secrecy. While the most senior men were adamant that WRANS would not work as mechanics, they did indeed work in ordnance artificers' workshops.
Several women wore WRANS uniform merely for convenience or safety against the event of their being discovered and, as a civilian, being treated as a spy. Olive Boye was given an honorary commission in the WRANS to give her enlisted status - thus protecting her from the danger of being treated as a spy in the event of her being captured.
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During the battles, Australian army bombardment liaison teams had helped to ensure the accuracy of naval fire in support of the landings. The Royal Australian Air Force on the other hand, contributed aerial photo-reconnaissance and aerial minelaying. Before the big battles of the war, Australian coast watchers in the Pacific provided crucial intelligence that was necessary in retaking of Pacific Islands such as Solomons, Peleliu, among others.
The Palo memorial will close to the site where General Douglas MacArthur first stepped ashore during the historic Leyte landings. I was immensely proud of the life-saving work of the Australian military in the aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda Haiyan last year. And I am honoured to be here today to recognise the efforts of our service personnel who sacrificed their lives for the freedom of the Philippines.
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The Leyte landing was the start of the capitulation of Japanese occupational forces in the Pacific. You can manage them any time by clicking on the notification icon.
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Other items in the collection include a souvenir book of photos relating to Crete campaign in the Second World War, press cuttings, memoirs of prisoners of war and correspondence with Angus and Robertson and Harper Collins. Donor G. McDonald P Donor D.
Conley, author of children's novels speaks of her work as a writer and the discipline required ; she recalls her childhood and family life ; working in the WRANs and naval life ; the beginnings of her career as a full time writer; Betty Roland and the Society of Women Writers ; she explains the title of her book "The dangerous Bombara" ; the editing of her manuscript for her book "Gecko gully" ; she speaks of the theme for her novel titled "Lucas".
While most memorials encourage audiences to keep a reverential distance, to stand outside the experience of war and reflect upon it, Ferguson wants the viewer to walk right into the middle of the work, to experience a sense of empathy with the women it celebrates. The insignia of the women's services are displayed discreetly around the mosaic, because for Ferguson, ceremony is far less important than the human dimension.
For many women, the work they undertook during the Second World War provided a first taste of freedom and responsibility.
Women's Royal Australian Naval Service (WRANS) (1941 - 1984)
When the war ended and those jobs were given back to the men, it must have come as a bitter blow, because their lives and way of thinking had already been changed. It is this sense of metamorphosis that Ferguson has tried to capture in her stone mosaic, in which the variegated colours represent the different lives, the different backgrounds and experiences of servicewomen.
Set in a peaceful grove between the deciduous trees, the sculpture changes the appearance in relation to the changes in daylight, the play of shadows, and the sprinkling of leaves that fall haphazardly onto the stone. Ferguson draws a parallel between the gradual process of awakening to the environment in which we live, and a growing recognition of the debt we owe to those men and women who gave their time, and their lives, in defence of this land.
Her stone platform may be undemonstrative, but it has a feeling of underlying strength. It is a foundation upon which new recognitions can be built. The visitors were completing activities of a character formation moral leadership course for Catholic personnel during a special visit to Raheen. Donor J. Morgan P Provan right and H. Dunshea are proud of their badges, identical to those worn by male naval telegraphists.