William George Berry
From Our Contribution
|Date of Birth||12 Jun 1905|
|Place of Birth||Fremantle, Western Australia|
|Death||1 May 1999, aged 93|
|Place of Death||Bentley, Western Australia|
|Age at Enlistment||34 years, 5 months|
|Description||6'0½" (1.84m) tall ; ; dark complexion ; brown eyes ; light brown hair|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||Fifth Road, Armadale|
|Next of Kin||Wife , Mrs Mabel Elsie Ray Berry|
|Reg Number||F 2356|
|Date of Enlistment||15 Nov 1939|
|Rank||Engine Room Artificer Class III|
|Ships Served On|
|Ship Name||HMAS Gunbar|
|Tour Dates||4 Dec 1940 ‒ 30 Apr 1942|
|Ship Name||HMAS Latrobe|
|Tour Dates||6 Nov 1942 ‒ 6 Jul 1943|
|Post War Details|
|Fate||Returned to Australia (Medical)|
1939-45 Star |
War Medal 1939-45
Australian Service Medal 1939-45
During 1938 Bill married Mabel Elsie Ray Bollard (1914 - 2001) in Perth. Mabel died 11 Jan 2001 in Bentley.
Enlisted in Fremantle, and was posted to HMAS Cerberus V (the Naval Reserve Depot) in Fremantle. He was still with them on 1 Aug 1940 when the base was renamed HMAS Leeuwin. On 4 Dec 1940 he was posted to HMAS Penguin in Sydney as a member of the HMAS Gunbar, an auxiliary minesweeper that had been requisitioned by the Navy and which was commissioned on 18 Dec 1940. HMAS Gunbar relocated to operate out of Fremantle from March 1941 and on 19 Feb 1942 she was in Darwin harbour when it was strafed and bombed during a Japanese air raid. One of her crew was killed in the attack, and it was later said to have had an impact on Bill's health.
On 1 May 1942 Bill was transferred to HMAS Cerberus in Victoria, and a month later he was transferred to HMAS Penguin in Sydney where he remained until 6 Nov 1942 when he joined the crew of HMAS Latrobe a Bathurst class Corvette. On 15 Nov 1942 he was granted a Good Conduct Badge and reclassified as an ERA III (Engine Room Artificer Class 3). On 1 Jan 1943 the Latrobe relocated to Magnetic Island, and on 19 Feb 1943 to Melville Island in the Northern Territory.
On 14 Aug 1943 Bill had returned to the HMAS Leeuwin in Fremantle as an interim Medical Report dated 16 Jul 1943 indicated that he was suffering with 'Anxiety Neurosis' and Nervous Exhaustion. This followed the attacks on HMAS Latrobe and perhaps built on anxiety caused during the earlier episode in Darwin. Granted a month's leave with reassessment on his return. On 7 Jan 1944 a Medical Board approved his discharge on medical grounds from 6 Feb 1944.
Electoral Roll entries: 1954 - 1980 at 154 Forrest street, East Fremantle, health inspector.