MEMORIES OF WOOMERA - 6


My dear Mark,

At the age of seventy, I have just joined the ranks of the Cyber-army, and I have been fortunate enough to have found your web-site during my infant surfing attempts. I worked at Woomera until November 1973, having arrived from the U.K., together with my family, in November 1966, on a contract for my employer, Short Bros, to civilianise operations of the Air Trials Unit at Evetts Field.

As a family, we can truthfully say that those seven years were the happiest times that we have ever spent, in our whole lives, and all ex Woomera-ites will know exactly what I am saying. Oz is a great country, and it's people are the salt of the earth. That is not being sycophantic. It is a statement of a true fact. Where else would a mate, called Kamahl, fly from Sydney to Woomera, to walk my wife up the aisle at our daughter's wedding ? Where else would a mate, called Pete Curtis, motor from Sydney to Nowra, to share a lunch-time schooner of grog, and then motor back to Sydney to work?

We bequeathed our daughter, Maureen, to Oz, when she married in 1972, and she now resides at Baldivis, WA, together with her husband Bill Fiora, and two smashing kids, which my wife, and I, like to look on as OUR contribution to Oz.

I would be pleased to supply you with any information, that you may require, based on my personal experiences in Woomera, and the following time-table :

1966-1970     Evetts field. Air Trials. ( Jindivik and Meteor aircraft. )
1967-1970     Jervis Bay, NSW ( Jindivik operations for the R.A.N. )
1970-1973     Rangehead and Launcher Area 13.(  Petrel supersonic rocket target service.)

In return, could I ask your for help in trying to locate an Alan and Joy Davies. Alan was a Range safety officer, detached to Woomera, from the Australian Royal Artillery, and was at Woomera in 1973, when I left.  I have tried, through Army records, at Melbourne, but failed. It is just possible that he may visit your web-site, and he would remember ' Taffy Jones ' from LA 13 days.

In conclusion, may I say, that anyone, visiting your web-site, who remembers me, is most welcome to make contact through :
Lucy and Gwyn Jones at:

E-mail:     gwynjones@excite.co.uk


As a member of the USAF, my family and I were residents of Woomera from Dec 1973 through Dec 1975.  My greatest memory was the birth of my oldest son in 1975 at the Woomera hospital.  He enjoyed dual citizenship for the first 18 years of his life and was proud of that fact.  For 10 years his soccer ID card told of his birth in Woomera which raised many questions from countless officials as to his origins.

Three things we miss most from our stay in the outback are:
(1) the kindness shown to us from our Australian hosts (the many families with whom we made friends),
(2) weekend softball games and the cameraderie it fostered (Foster is the key here) and
(3) the evening umbrella of stars....breathtaking and not seen since in the States.

Things we miss the least are (1) the flies and (2) Vegemite (sorry about that; never acquired a taste for the spread).  In all seriousness, our friends were close friends....many evenings spent just talking.  Learned to live without the tele or radio....it was a refreshing experience.   I hope to continue brousing your web and, perchance, recognize a name or two from my time "down under".

Thanks

R. K.


At approximately 3:00 in the afternoon on Christmas Eve 1973 we landed in Woomera after a long flight from Travis AFB, California.  We did a quick fly by to chase off the roos and then came in for the short field landing in our C-141. I stayed (working as part of the 5DSCS) until March 1975.  The virtually self contained  village and tech site provided a vast array of experiences and memories.  The warm weather was exceeded only by the warmth of the many people we were privileged to
work with.  Both the RAAF folks and the contractor civilians as well as the still nomadic Aborigines who passed through now and then.  Great place, Woomera!

Great website!  Ta!
David Worden, California, USA

E-mail:    sengraving@earthlink.net



 
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(Last updated: 19 October, 2003)