Friday, February 5, 2010

Australia: WRANs Honoured

From the Warrnambool Standard:
MARGARET Morton remembers her time in the Royal Australian Navy with great affection. “I loved it,” she said of her stint in the Women’s Royal Australian Navy (WRAN) Service at HMAS Cerebus from 1945-1946.

As an 18-year-old WRAN, her roles included working as an officer’s stewardess, and in the kitchen and serving meals.

The naval jacket she wore as a WRAN is one of a number of items in the Women in Uniform exhibition on display at the Warrnambool RSL.

Mrs Morton, 83, of Warrnambool, said she was pleased the contribution of women to Australia’s armed services was being recognised by the sub branch.

She said she loved the camaraderie of the WRANs at Cerebus and continued to enjoy the company of fellow ex-servicewomen who met at the Warrnambool RSL on the first Monday of every month.

Mrs Morton said she joined the navy to make a contribution to Australia’s effort in the World War II and “just made it in” before the war ended.

While Mrs Morton’s memories of her time in the armed services are happy ones, they contrast sharply with the war experiences of the late Mona Wilton, of Naringal, whose war service medals and citation are also in the exhibition.

Ms Wilton, 28, was killed during World War II when she was serving as a nurse.

The exhibition will be open until September.

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