Welcome to the stories of one family’s 20th century warriors.
To date the site details the aeronautical and wartime experiences of my grandfather Clement George Noonan. Clem loved aviation long before he became an aircraft fitter (ground engineer) in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). During WW2 Clem worked on military aircraft in Australia and on several islands to Australia’s immediate north. Clem kept a tiny diary for the majority of the time he was overseas and when he died in 1984 my grandmother gave the diary to my aunt Leonie. By later typing and sharing the diary with family Leonie inspired my research into Clem’s aeronautical and wartime activities presented on this site.
For the first time, this site presents Clem’s RAAF history from the time of his application to join in April 1940 to his discharge in October 1945. It includes:
- a description of the activities at each of the places he served in Australia, including his training period, and several restored photographs;
- his war diary complete with (in most cases restored) copies of his wartime photographs; and
- historical details of the places, events and aircraft he experienced.
Clem’s diary refers to letters he wrote to my grandmother Shirley but it is not known whether any of those letters have survived. To that end we are fortunate that Clem’s wartime diary, photographs and other memorabilia are still with us. The diary content can be found on the page titled “Service Abroad”.
People of Clems’ generation and others before and since have given their all so that we can enjoy a comfortable existence at home here in Australia. By remembering (or learning) about their personal interests and their sacrifices we honour them and are reminded that peace is not a ‘given’ but rather something that has to be prized and (all too frequently) defended.
As a rule I’ve embedded external content within this site rather than provide links to supporting information. The exceptions are the excellent virtual tours of a Douglas Boston Aircraft to be found on the RAAF Amberley Aviation Heritage Centre website (Clem serviced RAAF Bostons with 22 Squadron). A bibliography of research references and external sites will be provided in due course.
I hope you enjoy the site, which is continuing to evolve as time permits. Besides additional information related to Clem I’ll later post my earlier research into the wartime activities of William Parker who died at the very end of WW1. My other grandfather (John Geyer) served in northern Australia and the south west Pacific during WW2 and it is my intention to document his wartime service here in future.
Coolum Beach, QLD
0425 396 431