William John Gardener
From Our Contribution
|Date of Birth||15 Feb 1914|
|Place of Birth||Karragullen, Western Australia|
|Death||17 Sep 1978 aged 65|
|Place of Death||Carlisle, Western Australia|
|Age at Enlistment||28 years, 11 months|
5'4½" (1.64m) tall ; 168lbs|
76.203 kg; medium complexion ; hazel eyes ; brown hair ; right hand index finger missing.
|Religion||Church of England|
|Address||Cnr Hastings & Scarborough roads, Scarborough, Western Australia.|
|Next of Kin||Wife , Mrs Valda May Gardener|
|Date of Enlistment||6 Feb 1943|
|Unit/Formation||No. 25 (City of Perth) Squadron RAAF & No.6 Airfield Construction Squadron RAAF|
|Post War Details|
|Fate||Remained in Australia|
War Medal 1939-45 |
Australian Service Medal 1939-45
At time of first applying to join the RAAF, Bill was a labourer working for the Melville Roads Board. In Jan 1943 he declared that he was a truck driver working for EG Woolcott.
Enlisted as an Aircraftsman level 1 at the No. 4 Recruiting Centre in Perth. After some basic drill training he was remustered as a Driver Motor Transport on 6 Feb 1943 and posted to the No. 17 Repair & Salvage Unit RAAF on 12 Mar 1943. On 23 Sep 1943 Bill was charged with drinking alcohol when on duty. He was awarded 7 day's Field Punishment. Bill was promoted to Leading Aircraftsman on 1 Oct 1943. During 1943 he also married Valda May Barrett in Perth.
This was followed by a transfer on 11 Apr 1944 to No. 25 (City of Perth) Squadron RAAF based at Pearce at a time when they were undertaking Army co-operation duties. On 24 Jul 1944 he was charged with two offences, 1) failing to take sufficient care of goods entrusted to his care, and 2) failing to report at a proper time. Awarded 14 days Field Punishment and forfeiture of 14 days pay.
On 29 Sep 1944 he was posted to the No. 6 Airfield Construction Squadron RAAF. Its location is not known, but as Bill doesn't appear to have qualified for the Pacific Star, it would have been in Australia prior to them moving to Morotai. On 1 Mar 1945 Bill was sent to the No. 5 Personnel Depot RAAF for discharge (medically unfit for service in tropical climates) which took place on 16 Mar 1945.
Electoral Roll entries: 1949 - 1954 at 13 Nash street, Peth, railway employee; 1958 at 194 Loftus street, North Perth, porter; 1972 at 17 Star street, Carlisle, retired.
Children recorded on Air Force records seemingly from a previous marriage are: Valda June b. 21 Sep 1934; Donald William b. 28 Sep 1936; Douglas Donald b. 20 Dec 1937; and Barry John b. 8 Feb 1940. They were being looked after by his mother in law. Valda died 12 Aug 1998, aged 84 in Claremont.