VX50081 (382001) Lieutenant Colonel Bernard James Callinan, AC, CBE, DSO, MC

Date of birth2 February 1913 Australia: Victoria, Melbourne 
Date commissioned  1940-06-05   
Career summary 1  1940-07-05  lieutenant Reserve of Officers (Engrs) 
Career summary 3  1940-07-05  Engr Training Centre (28th Engr Training Depot) 
Career summary 4  1940-10-15  Citizens Military Force Royal Australian Engineers (Fd) 
Career summary 5  1941-03-03  seconded & enlisted 2AIF 
Career summary 6  1941-03-03  instructor Demolitions Wing, 101 British Military Mission, 7th Infantry Training Centre 
Career summary 7  1941-07-05  captain 2iC 2/2nd Indep Company 
Career summary 8  1941-12-12  arrived Timor 
Career summary 9  1942-02-22  missing in action (reported) 
Career summary 10  1942-05-24  officer commanding 2/2nd Indep Company 
Career summary 11  1942-07-04  temporary major commanding officer Australian Troops Sparrow Force 
Career summary 12  1942-11-11  commanding officer Sparrow Force 
Career summary 13  1943-01-10  Returned to Australia (Darwin) 
Career summary 15  1943-02-02  major (bd 1 Sep 4 
Career summary 14  1943-02-06  MARRIED 
Career summary 16  1943-03-31  general service officer grade 2 (ops) Headquarters FAA 
Career summary 17  1943-05-02 - 1943-07-09  course Jnr Staff S 
Career summary 18  1943-05-29  Mention in Despatches (7 Dec 41-30 Sep 42) 
Career summary 19  1943-08-30  arrived Merauke 
Career summary 20  1943-11-05  2iC 31/51st battalion 
Career summary 22  1943-11-21  attached Special Duty 
Career summary 21  1943-11-21  Returned to Australia (Townsville ) 
Career summary 24  1943-11-21  arrived Merauke 
Career summary 23  1943-12-23  Military Cross 
Career summary 25  1944-04-20  Returned to Australia (Townsville ) 
Career summary 26  1944-04-22 - 1944-06-03  course Land Headquarters Tactical School senior offi 
Career summary 27  1944-07-05  arrived Merauke 
Career summary 28  1944-08-08  Returned to Australia (Townsville ) 
Career summary 29  1944-12-08  arrived Bougainville 
Career summary 30  1945-01-30 - 1945-02-08  attached 26th batta 
Career summary 31  1945-02-08  temporary lieutenant colonel, commanding officer 26th battalion 
Appointment  1945-02-08 - 1945-12-14  Battalion: 26th; Rank on appointment: major, temporary lieutenant colonel ; Appointed from: 2iC 31/52nd battalion ; Reason for end of appointment: demobilised 
Career summary 33  1945-07-08  Returned to Australia (Melb) ex Bougainville 
Career summary 34  1945-08-04  arrived Bougainville 
Career summary 32  1945-09  administering command 11th Brigade  
Career summary 36  1945-09-17  arrived Rabaul 
Career summary 37  1945-12-14  relinquished command 26th battalion (demob) 
Career summary 35  1946-01-03  lieutenant colonel (bd 8 Feb 45) gazetted 
Career summary 38  1946-01-18  Returned to Australia (Syd) 
Career summary 39  1946-02-06  Reserve of Officers 
Date and unit at enlistment (ORs)  3 March 1941   
Date of discharge  5 February 1946   
Citations 7    On 26 Feb 45 the unit commenced to advance from the GILLMAN River meeting stubborn opposition from strong enemy pockets. 
Citations 8    Lt-Col CALLINAN destroyed a number of enemy positions by sound planning and able leadership. The enemy made a strong stand at the COMPTON River and subjected the unit to constant artillery fire. 
Career summary 2    course #12 SMiddle East (Casula) Jun-Sep 40 [from Callinan's own correspondence] 
Career summary 40    ***POST WAR*** 
Citations 9    Lt-Col. CALLINAN then planned the capture of SORAKEN Plantation by a series of night landings (the first taking place on night 11 Mar 45 ) behind the enemy forward positions, which had the effect of completely disorganising the enemy resistance and allowing the SORAKEN Peninsula to be captured with practically no casualties to his own men. 
Citations 11    Despite considerable enemy artillery activity, Lt-Col. CALLINAN was constantly moving amongst his men, exposing himself to enemy fire whilst carrying out personal reconnaisances of enemy positions to plan further attacks. His cheerful disposition and skilful leadership was outstanding and was instrumental in maintaining a very high morale in the Unit, making possible the success of all the actions the Unit was engaged in, despite the determination of the enemy to hold SORAKEN PENINSULA at all costs.' 
Citations 10    On 5 Mar 45 he successfully cleared SAPOSA ISLAND of the enemy, ensuring the protection of his flank and later occupied TAIOF Island. 
Citations 6    As commanding officer of 26 Aust Inf Bn (AIF) Lt-Col CALLINAN was responsible for clearing the enemy and gaining control of the North West coast of Bougainville. 
Citations 2    'For outstanding courage, skill and leadership while serving with 2/2 Aust Indep Coy and LANCER FORCE in Portuguese TIMOR between Feb 42 and Jan 43. Always cheerful, cool and clear-thinking, this Officer was an inspiration to his men during nearly twelve months of guerilla fighting against vastly superior numbers of Japanese an hostile natives. His personal recces through enemy-occupied country, the valuable information he brought back and his skilful handling first of the Coy and then of the Force enabled severe casualties to be inflicted on the enemy and our resistance to be maintained for the maximum practicable period. 
Citations 3    When the Force was ordered to evacuate, he skilfully disengaged it from contact with the enemy, led it for three days over the mountains, across rivers and through swamps and embarked it without loss of personnel. he personally organized the final details of the evacuation and remained on the beach until the last boat left. Before commencing this evacuation he volunteered to remain on TIMOR to organize native resistance but was not permitted to do so.' 
Citations 5    'REF Map TAIOF ISLAND 1 in to 1 ml. For outstanding courage and devotion to duty. 
Date of death20 July 1995  

Background: B Eng (Civ), Melb; Extra Service Number: 382001; Militia Number: V6885; Occupation: Civil Engineer. Served as a Lieutenant-Colonel with 26 Australian Infantry Battalion 2/2nd Independent Company prior to discharge from the Army, during the Second World War.