Reddy, Michael George (Lance Sergeant, b.1919 - d.2005)
Collection relating to the Second World War service of NX3730 Lance Sergeant Michael George Reddy, 1 Australian Signals Corps and 6 Division Signals, Second Australian Imperial Force, Middle East, Greece and New Guinea, 1940-1981.
This collection consists of three wallets of material and and two oversize items relating to the service of Lance Sergeant Michael George Reddy with 1 Australian Signals Corps and 6 Division Signals in the Middle East, Greece, and New Guinea.
Wallet 1 of 3 – Consists of one copy of the Australian Solders’ Pocket Book, and two diaries of Lance Sergeant Reddy.
The Australian Soldiers’ Pocket Book was published by the Australian Comforts Fund and gifted to solders in 1940. It contains printed information on the laws of war, signals, proper behaviour, Arabic language, gas warfare, first aid, and Australian History. In his copy of the book, Lance Sergeant Reddy wrote notes relating to the places he visited and served (including dates), next-of-kin information, a will, and a list of letters sent home.
The first diary contains entries dated between 1 January and 31 December 1941. This diary covers the period of Lance Sergeant Reddy’s service in Egypt, Libya, Greece, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon. In this diary, Lance Sergeant Reddy writes about having leave in Cairo, sightseeing, transferring to a camp in Libya, seeing war destruction, enemy air raids, being caught in dust storms, driving long distances to deliver messages and supplies, working in a signals office, his impressions of the places he passed through, travelling by boat to Greece, visiting Greek villages, the warm welcome of the Greek people, daily duties, retreating from the advancing Germans, sleeping in fields, evacuating Greece by boat at Kalamata, being targeted by enemy dive bombers, settling into a camp in Palestine, seeing films and concerts, having leave in Jerusalem and Tel-Aviv, doing training, serving in Syria and Lebanon, servicing bicycles, recreational activities, and doing road reconnaissance.
The second diary contains entries dated between 1 January and 3 October 1945. This diary covers the period of Lance Sergeant Reddy’s service in New Guinea. In this diary, Lance Sergeant Reddy writes about his journey by boat from Australia to New Guinea, landing at Lae, settling into camp, missing his wife and daughter, setting up signalling lines and equipment, attending lectures, playing cricket, receiving letters from home, swimming at the beach, working in the jungle, moving to a camp at Labu, repairing signalling lines, transporting supplies, seeing films, being ill and recovering in hospital, being promoted, doing camp maintenance work, doing regular physical training, the weather, living at a remote camp and doing his own cooking, interacting with the local people, recreational activities during his time off duty, supervising the camp mess, preparing for demobilisation, and returning to Australia.
Wallet 2 of 3 – Contains two folders of material relating to Lance Sergeant Reddy.
Wallet 2 of 3, Folder 1 of 2 consists of 42 photographs relating to Lance Sergeant Reddy’s service between 1940 and 1942. These photographs cover the period of Lance Sergeant Reddy’s service in Egypt, Libya, Greece, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon, and include portraits of Sergeant Reddy and his fellow servicemen and images of the places that he visited.
Wallet 2 of 3, Folder 2 of 2 consists of 17 items kept by Lance Sergeant Reddy as souvenirs during his service in the Middle East in 1940 and 1941. These items include postcards, envelopes and official documents in languages such as French, German, Italian and Arabic.
Wallet 3 of 3 – Consists of one typed memoir of Lance Sergeant Reddy. This memoir covers Lance Sergeant Reddy’s entire period of service, from his enlistment in 1939 to his discharge in 1945. This memoir also contains copies of photographs, copies of service records, and reference material included by Lance Sergeant Reddy.
Oversize Item 1 of 2 – Consists of one certificate in Greek language for the Commemorative Medallion of the Campaign of 1940-1941. On 13 March 1981, this certificate was presented to Lance Sergeant Reddy by the Hellenic Democracy [Greece] for his part in the Greek Campaign during the Second World War.
Oversize Item 2 of 2 – Consists of original cardboard tube that originally housed the certificate for Lance Sergeant Reddy’s Commemorative Medallion of the Campaign of 1940-1941. A typed translation of the certificate is adhered to the exterior of the tube.
Lance Sergeant Michael George Reddy enlisted to the Second Australian Imperial Force on 23 October 1939. After a period of training, he embarked for service in the Middle East with 1 Australian Signals Corps. With this unit, Lance Sergeant Reddy served in Egypt, Libya, Greece, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon. He was Mentioned in Despatches on 30 December 1941. In 1942, he returned to Australia, but embarked for service in New Guinea in December 1944. Lance Sergeant Reddy served in New Guinea until the end of the war. At the time of his discharge on 17 October 1945, he was posted to 6 Corps of Signals.