Surf Club remembers the Sydney

MORE than 500 people attended a memorial service for the HMAS Sydney II at Leighton Beach Sunday, with the local lifesaving club reiterating its strong ties to the doomed warship.

The Sydney was sunk during a battle with the German raider Kormoran in 1941, with its whereabouts only discovered in 2008. All 645 of the Sydney’s crew went down with the ship.

Fremantle Surf Lifesaving Club president Mike Shaw says between 1939 and 1941 when the ship was moored in Fremantle Harbour, many of the crew would head out to Leighton to take part in club activities.

“For many of those sailors, it was a home away from home,” Mr Shaw says.

15. 47NEWS

• The Fremantle Surf Lifesaving Club had a strong turnout for its memorial service for the HMAS Sydney.

Just months before their fatal voyage, some of the crew had presented the lifesavers with a hand-made surf reel to thank them for their hospitality. They also had a miniature replica, which subsequently became the club’s championship Sydney Reel Trophy.

During the ceremony Captain Angela Bond, who’s commander of the HMAS Stirling naval base, also reiterated the relationship between the navy, surf lifesaving club and the community.

After the speeches a reel party in lifesaving patrol uniforms carried the reel to the water’s edge, with a wreath handed to a waiting surf boat crew who took it out to see where it was placed in the water while they raised their oars in salute.

Leave a Reply