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a Good Weekend!”
21st to 25th APRIL 2023
3 SQUADRON'S LONG-WEEKEND OF ANZAC EVENTS
Friday 21 April.
3SQN Association Members were privileged with an extra-entertaining
ANZAC long-weekend! It all started with the very successful ‘3SQN
Family Day’ at Williamtown. The weather miraculously cleared
(much better than forecast) and all proceedings went well.
Congratulations to all 3SQN serving personnel for their efforts on the
aircraft and equipment displays, demonstrations and entertainment were
They even managed to cater a tasty free sausage-sanga and drink for
everyone in the bumper crowd!
2) SYDNEY -
“3 Squadron and the Red Baron.”
Saturday 22 April.
the 105th Anniversary of the military burial [by 3AFC!] of WW1’s top
ace, the German Baron von RICHTHOFEN, James OGLETHORPE of
3SQN Association presented an illustrated talk on the Baron’s life and
times at the ANZAC Memorial in Hyde Park, Sydney.
PILGRIMAGE.” Sunday 23 April.
were lucky to have another lovely day for our Annual Service at the 3SQN
were two outstanding highlights to the Service:
- WGCDR KIELY
spoke on the 20th Anniversary of OPERATION FALCONER.
(The RAAF’s contribution to the Allied Invasion of Iraq in 2003.)
There were many vital lessons learned by the RAAF regarding the
operational shortcomings of their equipment at that time. These
experiences prompted much updating of the Hornets before they
went to war again in 2014.
‘OPERATION OKRA’. - Kenny also commented that he
had no idea as to why the RAAF named that particular operation
after a vegetable!]
- Another great moment
was the presentation of the “Nigel
Love Commemorative Clock” to the Squadron:
was a 3AFC WW1 pilot flying RE8s, experiencing many exciting
adventures on the Western Front. Our member John LOVE
- Nigel’s son - read us Nigel’s account of one of his
April 1918.] "We had made one or two successful runs in
formation, when we were suddenly attacked by six enemy Albatros
came at us on our own level and opened fire, pretty
early, at a fairly good distance away. The dog fight was
After a lapse of time, I noticed that Rees's machine started a
"spinning nosedive" towards the ground, disappearing into cloud at
about 6,000 feet, with the enemy "Hun", diving vertically on his tail,
pouring in tracer bullets.
scrap having concluded, I shut my engine off and spiralled down to the
wreck on the ground. Amazingly, the crew did survive, though
with serious injuries. On returning to base,
examination of our RE8 machine revealed just how close our encounter
really was. Both
wings had been shot through to the main spars and the rear of the
Observer cockpit had received a burst of rounds."
grandson, Andrew LOVE, then took up the story:
Grandfather, on returning from WW1 in June 1919, turned his life to pioneering
Civil Aviation and opening Eastern States air-routes. He personally selected Mascot
Aerodrome (Sydney International Airport) that he owned for four
years, and established Australia's first aircraft factory,"The
Australian Aircraft & Engineering Co." A.A.&E.Co. built six
Avro 504Ks for the RAAF, with Australian-sourced materials. The
completed Avro 504Ks were wheeled onto the grassed Mascot
airfield. He also built the first Commercial Aircraft seating
four passengers approved by the Commonwealth - the "B1".
The NSW Air
Training Corps held a Special Annual Review Parade on 10
November 1984, honouring
Nigel LOVE. I shall read the last paragraphs of the Parade
"During his term as
Commanding Officer, up
until September 30, 1945, Nigel LOVE had been responsible for
developing a literally non-existent organisation into an effective
Corps, which contributed substantially to the war effort and
eventually to victory for the Allied Forces in both theatres of
the same manner as the Royal Australian Air Force looks upon Air
Marshal Sir Richard WILLIAMS as "the Father of the RAAF", the Air
Training Corps looks upon WGCDR Nigel LOVE as "The Father of the
It gives me pleasure
to present this Restored Mounted Clock for 3 Squadron's Williamtown
Museum Collection. The clock is an acknowledgement by the Air
Training Corps, at the time of Wing Commander Nigel LOVE's retirement,
of his past service to the Nation.
John LOVE further
advises that the particular “nautical” style of the clock recalls
Nigel’s use of small sailing boats on Sydney Harbour to train the
ATC boys in concepts of vector navigation and wind effects. John
recalls that on one desperate day in 1942, the boats were suddenly
commandeered by the Navy and Nigel had to go to great lengths to get
them back for the Air Force!
4) SYDNEY ANZAC
MARCH. Tuesday 25 April.
big march in Sydney went well. The sun was shining and glinting
off the many campaign and service medals on display amongst the large
3SQN serving contingent.
The Fighter Squadrons’
LUNCH at the Pullman Hotel drew a large crowd.
Focus for the speeches was the 20th Anniversary of RAAF combat
over Iraq in 2003 – “OPERATION FALCONER”.
Former C.O.75, Mel
HUPFELD and his WOE “Macca” McDERMOTT both made
fascinating addresses with lots of humorous asides.
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