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Table of Contents

Glimpse of the RAAF Meteorological Service




Chapter 1: Growing Up
Early Australian Meteorologists
Early Days in the Bureau
Forecasters' Training Course
My Classmates
Reorganisation of the Bureau
Love and Marriage

Chapter 2: Port Moresby Before Pearl Harbour

Chapter 3: Port Moresby After Pearl Harbour

Chapter 4: Allied Air Force HQ and RAAF Command, Brisbane

Chapter 5: Japan Surrenders and We Are Demobilised



Appendix 1: References

Appendix 2: Milestones

Appendix 3: Papers Published in Tropical Weather Research Bulletins

Appendix 4: Radiosonde Observations 1941–46


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Forecasters' Training Course (continued)

They were a varied but stimulating collection of young men, mostly in their early twenties. The seven South Australians were all former school-teachers who were well-known to each other. They had that distinctly South Australian confidence in their intellectual superiority. Reg Clarke was a particularly bright academic type, forceful and articulate in debate but with a fine sense of humour. Doug Forder, Bruce Mason and Bruce Retallack were serious-minded hardworking students. Of all the South Australians Bryan Rofe was the greatest extrovert, a good athlete with a devil-may-care appearance and a twinkle in his eye. 'Greenie' Greenfield, Harry Ashton and 'Rupe' Senior (all former school-teachers) were somewhat older than the rest and less frivolous. 'Greenie', somewhat cynical about our youthful exuberance, was somewhat slower than most to complete the task of chart analysis but amazed us by playing a game of chess with fellow students without seeing the board while he strove to finish his chart analysis.

The Victorians were a sober-minded group with the exception of Jack McDonough who was a younger, fun-loving person. Arch Shields had the distinction of playing Australian football for Carlton. Bill Brann, small and wiry with a wry sense of humour, had a distinguished record as a long distance runner.

We New South Welshmen were a mixed lot and, if I remember correctly, most had been school-teachers. Jim Williams was a handsome, confident, personable individual. 'Morrie' Nettle was somewhat shy. George Smallman and Jack Wiesner reserved and earnest. Andy Garriock had an encyclopaedic knowledge about a wide variety of subjects. I lacked confidence and was eager to make friends with my colleagues.

George Rutherford, a New Zealander, was an imperturbable, likeable character who seemed to fit in well with his Aussie classmates.

Our instructors were 'Lennie' Dwyer, a member of the Bureau and head of the training school, 'Tiny' Newell, a former high school headmaster, 'Fritz' Loewe, head of the Department of Meteorology at The University of Melbourne and 'Pat' Allender, an observer in the Bureau.

People in Bright Sparcs - Ashton, Henry Tamblyn (Harry); Brann, Harold Walter Allen Neale (Bill); Clarke, Reginald Henry; Dwyer, Leonard Joseph; Forder, Douglas Highmoor (Doug); Loewe, Fritz; Retallack, Bruce James; Rofe, Bryan; Shields, Archibald John

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Gibbs, W. J. 1995 'A Glimpse of the RAAF Meteorological Service', Metarch Papers, No. 7 March 1995, Bureau of Meteorology

© Online Edition Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre and Bureau of Meteorology 2001
Published by Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre, using the Web Academic Resource Publisher