Ex-RAAF centenarian get surprise service memento

World War II veteran George Lincoln was presented a Royal Australian Air Force 100th birthday commemorative memento on 11 May as part of the centenary year project to honour RAAF centenarians.

CAPTION: Senior Australian Defence Force Officer for RAAF Base Williamtown Group Captain Anthony Stainton presents George Lincoln a Royal Australian Air Force centenary memento. Story by Wing Commander Sue Yates. Photo by Sergeant David Gibbs.

My Lincoln turned 100 on February 25.

He was born in the Sydney suburb of Marrickville and enlisted in the Air Force from his home at the nearby suburb of Arncliffe in October, 1942, at the age of 21.

During his six months of training at Point Cook, Victoria, he learned Morse code. He was later posted to Western Australia where he served the remainder of his time with the Air Force.

Mr Lincoln worked as a telephonist sending coded meteorological messages back to Perth from regions including Broome, Nookanbah near the Fitzroy Crossing, Potshot, Kalgoorlie and Forrest Airfield.

“I posted out of 327 Radar Unit to Nookanbah, which was a new aerodrome with only four signal operators making up a total of about 12 men,” Mr Lincoln said.

“We camped two miles from the Fitzroy River which was 250 miles inland from Broome and when it rained, the river flooded three miles wide.

“We had to erect tents up about 2-3 feet which helped a bit and during the wet season we would catch sawfish, which were as big as sharks, and the cooks would prepare and cook them for us.”

Mr Lincoln discharged from the Royal Australian Air Force in March 1946 as a leading aircraftman, having served his final six months at Forrest.

He went on to breed, train and race horses in Victoria – many winning at Mooney Valley Racing Club.

Senior Australian Defence Force Officer for RAAF Base Williamtown Group Captain Anthony Stainton presented Mr Lincoln with the commemorative memento in recognition of his service in a small private ceremony at Port Macquarie, NSW, with his wife of 58 years, Ruth, his daughter Catherine and close friends.

Mr Lincoln said he was surprised to be contacted to receive the memento.

“It was quite a surprise to receive the call from the Air Force as I haven’t been actively engaged with the services since I discharged in Moore Park, NSW, in 1946,” Mr Lincoln said.

Group Captain Stainton said he was proud and privileged to make the presentations to past-serving centenarians who celebrate their birthday in Air Force’s centenary year.


 
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