Ean Lawrence McDonald discusses his service in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN),1938-1965, with John Bannister.

Accession Number S04556
Collection type Sound
Measurement 3 hr 45 min
Object type To be confirmed
Physical description compact disc-recordable (CD-R); SONY; wave; 48kHz; 24 bit; stereo
Maker McDonald, Ean Lawrence
Bannister, William John Edgerton
Date made 6-7 October 2008
Access Open
Conflict Period 1930-1939
Period 1950-1959
Period 1960-1969
Second World War, 1939-1945
Period 1940-1949
Copyright Item copyright: © Australian War Memorial
Creative Commons License This item is licensed under CC BY-NC
Copying Provisions Copy provided for personal non-commercial use
Source credit to AWM Oral History Program
Description

Ean McDonald talks of his Second World War service career in the Royal Australian Navy. Remembering his first ship HMAS Sydney II, he talks of his fond memories of being a signalman on board the famous ship. After arriving in the Mediterranean, McDonald would be transferred to the Scrap Iron Flotilla serving on all the V and W ships - The Stuart, Vampire, Voyager, Vendetta and The Waterhen. He discusses his duties on board a number of these ships and recalls such experiences as bombardments of the Italian positions on the North African coast at Bardia, the sea battle of Matapan in March 1941, the evacuation of allied troops from Crete and the sinking of the Waterhen on June 30 1941. McDonald was on board the ship when it was sunk.

McDonald gives his opinions of the sinking of the HMAS Sydney on 19 November 1941 and looks at the inquiry into the ship's loss with all hands. McDonald would also be involved in the navigation and hydrographical surveys of islands associated with places such as New Guinea, New Britain and the Solomon islands. He recalls numerous stories associated with captaining the pathfinder ship Shepperton in enemy held territory. He speaks of experiences of both enemy and friendly fire. He looks at the reputation of General Douglas MacArthur and how he was seen by the allied Australian servicemen. Ean describes his understanding of the American Cartwheel operations and the position of the Australian forces during this allied advance through the Pacific. McDonald talks at length of his war time career and speaks of what he gained from the experience.

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