Today the Royal Australian Air Force marks a century of distinguished service since its inception on 31 March 1921.
FILE PHOTO: Stamps issued by Australia Post to commemorate the Centenary of the Royal Australian Air Force.
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price congratulated the Royal Australian Air Force on its centenary.
“In celebrating its centenary – from modest beginnings in 1921 – I am proud and honoured to join my fellow Australians to honour the 350,000 people whose courage, sacrifice and dedication helped build one of the finest air forces in the world,” Minister Price said.
“The occasion will be marked with multiple events, including a spectacular fly past [in Canberra] involving 60 current and former aircraft.
“Over the past century, the Royal Australian Air Force has been at the forefront of Australia’s technological advances.
“The aviation industry was born only a few years before the foundation of the RAAF.
“Throughout its life RAAF has led from the front by partnering with Australian businesses to support its capabilities.
Minister Price thanked each and every member – past, present and future – for their contribution to Australia’s safety.
Assistant Minister for Defence Andrew Hastie said that since the dawn of flight, brave men and women had been willing to defend Australia in the skies.
“350,000 Australian’s have proudly worn the Royal Australian Air Force uniform since 1921,” Minister Hastie said.
“RAAF aircrew have fought and served bravely in multiple wars above Europe, the Middle East, and the Asia Pacific.
“RAAF ground crews, logisticians and support staff have worked as one to deliver Australian air power in the moment of crisis.”
Minister Hastie said the Royal Australian Air Force’s motto ‘Per Ardua, Ad Astra’ – ‘Through struggle, to the stars’ – was fitting for the next decade and beyond.
“Many strategic challenges lie ahead for Australia.
“We need to be ready for them and we must prevail in the skies, as we have done so in the century past.”
See here or more information about the Royal Australian Air Force Centenary events program.