10 February 2015

Thomas Haworth

Bill's success story of today.

The search for the next of kin of Thomas Eugen Haworth began with a mystery parcel from ANZAC House here in Melbourne. As Elizabeth, the Chief Executive Officer’s Secretary, said “Its rather a mix this time”.
And what a mix:
An Italy Star,
A 1939-1945 War Medal
An Atlantic Star
An Africa Star
Thomas’s Korea medal
A 1970 Commemorative Medal celebrating the visit by Pope Paul the IV to Australia.
And last but by no means least; a USSR medal commemorating the end of WW1 (Yes WW1, the one that finished in 1918)
Plus some other items:
A passport wallet less the passport, but containing a Riggers Handbook, and a 1957 copy of the ‘Rules of the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes’
The piece de resistance was an Income Tax Notice of Assessment for 1983.
Who said returning medals wasn’t interesting? Okay different then.
So now to find the family of 5/1617 Thomas Eugene Haworth to return his Korea Medal.
War Graves provided me with his date of death and I found that his wife's name was Madge. Thomas was a West Australian, the 5 in his service number having given that away. That made my next port of call Karrakatta cemetery. There among the records I found Thomas. But no mention of Madge, his wife, so now the chances were I was looking for her.
A quick check of White Pages on the Internet and 5 minutes later I was talking to Madge. The story of the missing medal unfolded. Madge had attended the ANZAC Day service and march at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne some 3 years ago. It was not until later that she  realised that the safety pin that had held her husband’s Korea War Medal had come undone and the medal had dropped off.
So where has the medal been for the last three years? No one knows other that the person who passed the medal in to ANZAC House. 
While I apologise for the photo of Tom’s medal, it was a result of trying to highlight the hole left by the errant safety pin. If you look at the ribbon you can see the large hole left by the ‘unsafe’ safety pin. Those of you who are expecting me to rant about safety pins and their unreliability are going to be disappointed.

The returned medal tally is now 1616.

1 comment: