- Letter Writer
- History - WW2, Letter to the Editor
- RAN Ships
- HMAS Kuru
- March 2014 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
I was very interested to read the article concerning the above ship which was included in the September 2013 issue of the Review. My father was Commanding Officer of the 2/4 Independent Company part of Sparrow Force. In his photo collection is one of Kuru’s Captain, Lieutenant Grant. I enclose a copy for your records, the words are in my father’s writing and don’t need any further explanation.
‘Lt Grant, RAN who used help feed us, and supply us with cash and ammunition in Timor.’
Whether they both met on Timor is unknown. I think the photo was given to him when the Unit arrived back in Darwin in Arunta in January 1943. It is noted that all together six ships made runs to Betano – do you know if your records have the dates such runs were made, using the ships’ log books. I am very interested to learn if a supply drop was carried out on 9 November 1942 when a number of reinforcements arrived.
Many thanks for your assistance.
By Editor: The following reply was sent, thanking Jim for this interesting insight. A copy of another article from the March 2012 edition of our sister publication the Journal of Australian Naval History was forwarded as this article by John Bradford, The HMAS Armidale Tragedy – A Failure of Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence provides further details covering much of the information sought.
HMAS KURU ASSISTANCE TO SPARROW FORCE
Thank you for your letter dated 8 October 2013 regarding your father’s recollection of the assistance provided by LEUT John Grant, RANR when Commanding Officer of HMAS Kuru. The photograph is particularly of interest and we should like to include this with a copy of your letter in the next (March 2014) edition of our magazine.
In respect to the queries you have raised some answers are to be found in the enclosed copy of an article The HMAS Armidale Tragedy – A Failure of Command, Control, Communications and Intelligence by John Bradford which was published in the March 2012 edition of our sister magazine the Journal of Australian Naval History. This shows, on page 66, that HMAS Castlemaine conducted a run from Darwin on 5 November, arriving at Timor on 7 November 1942. Further details are to be found on the return of HMAS Arunta to Darwin in Australia in the War Of 1939 – 1945 – Royal Australian Navy 1942-1945 by G. Hermon Gill, especially page 224. This volume should be available at most public libraries.
The Reports of Proceedings (ROPs) of HMAS Castlemaine which might have some further detail are unfortunately not readily available other than by request to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. However it is most likely the ROPs would have been extensively used by Hermon Gill.
I trust this helps.
Walter Burroughs, Editor – Naval Historical Review