Commemorative medallions presented to Wide Bay veterans


Joyce Cunningham and Llew O'Brien

Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien today presented two Cooroy veterans with special commemorative medallions and certificates to honour their service in World War 2, and mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the war.

Mr O'Brien said the medallions were produced to mark the anniversary which took place on 15 August, and were available to every living Second World War veteran, in acknowledgement of their service.

"Wide Bay servicemen and women were well represented among the almost one million Australians who served in the Second World War, and these medallions are an acknowledgement of the sacrifices made by this remarkable generation of Australians," Mr O'Brien said.

Two World War 2 veterans, Joyce Cunningham and Elsie Dalzell, received the medallions in a special presentation today at the Cooroy RSL Sub-branch.

"Joyce Cunningham is a true-blue Queenslander, born on a dairy farm on the banks of Lake Cootharaba, and she grew up in the Gympie area," Mr O'Brien said.
"When war broke out, three of her brothers joined the Army, and her sister joined the Land Army. When she turned 17, she followed in their footsteps and joined the Land Army too.
"She worked hard on the land, sometimes while sleeping in tents or billeting with a local family, doing hard yakka like picking beans, tomatoes, turnips and potatoes, milking cows and feeding pigs, and driving tractors at farms between here in Wide Bay and Stanthorpe.
"Elsie Dalzell had lived her whole life in Chinchilla, when she signed up to the Australian Women's Army Service at the age of 20. She initially thought her application was unsuccessful, but soon enough, she found herself selected and left Chinchilla for the very first time on her way to Brisbane for training at the Exhibition Grounds.
"She was assigned to the Australian Searchlight Unit of the 56 Battery Royal Australian Engineers in Brisbane and later transferred to Townsville, where she worked in the operations room while living in tents on Pallaranda Beach.
"After the Search Lights units were disbanded, she worked for a time in the School of Military Intelligence at Southport, then the School of Tactics and Military Intelligence at Beenleigh and the staff school at Cabarlah as a switchboard operator before being discharged in 1946."
Mr O'Brien said around 12,000 veterans who served during the Second World War are still living today, and it was important to seize the opportunity as a nation to publicly acknowledge and honour their service.
"Elsie is turning 99 next week (September 30), and Joyce will be 94 on October 22, so I'm really pleased to be able to meet them today, and acknowledge their service with these medallions and certificates," Mr O'Brien said.

Second World War veterans, or their families on their behalf, can apply online at or, for those without internet access, by phone on 02 61918217 during business hours.

Llew O'Brien and Elsie Dalzell.

Australian Government Community Indigenous & Heritage

Llew O'Brien MP : View Full Profile
PO Box 283, Gympie
1300 301 968
Llew O'Brien MP
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
Work to start on the overdue Tinana Overtaking Lanes project 13 November 2020 | Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O'Brien has welcomed news that work will start on the long-overdue Tinana Overtaking Lane project next week (Monday 16 November)... More information...
Lower energy costs for Wide Bay dairy farmers 03 November 2020 | The Liberal National Government is continuing its support for the dairy industry, with six Wide Bay dairy farmers to receive grants for energy-efficient equipment, Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of... More information...
$1.6 million upgrade to Noosa Trails network to help bushfire recovery 14 October 2020 | Noosa Council will receive $1.6 million to improve and create new links within the Cooran-Pomona section of Noosa's hinterland trails network to aid in the region's economic recovery from bushfires and COVID-19... More information...
Our economic recovery plan delivers for Wide Bay households, businesses and industry 07 October 2020 | Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O'Brien has welcomed the Morrison Government's Economic Recovery Plan, saying it will create jobs, rebuild our economy and secure... More information...
Drought Resilience grants to encourage innovation in Wide Bay 01 October 2020 | Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien is encouraging organisations, farmer groups and individuals with innovative ideas to build drought resilience to apply for grants of up to $200,000. More information...
Expressions of Interest open for Local Jobs and Skills Taskforce 01 October 2020 | Expressions of interest are now open for membership of the Wide Bay and Sunshine Coast Local Jobs and Skills Taskforce to help connect job seekers and school leavers with training and employment opportunities. More information...
Bright ideas wanted for Science Week 01 October 2020 | Wide Bay organisations and individuals with ideas for exciting National Science Week events for next year are being encouraged to apply for a grant to make their idea a reality. More information...
Morrison Government backs Wide Bay businesses to 'go digital' 01 October 2020 | Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O'Brien is encouraging local businesses to "go digital" so they can compete, succeed and create job opportunities as Australia... More information...
Event grant to boost Noosa tourism 30 September 2020 | A new hospitality festival will receive $15,000 in funding from the Liberal and Nationals Government to boost domestic visitors and support Noosa's tourism sector following the summer's bushfires and the COVID-19... More information...
$500,000 grant for innovative technology to detect bushfires 30 September 2020 | Noosa tech company Fireball International will receive $500,000 in federal funding for an innovative new system that could detect bushfires in as little as three minutes, Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien... More information...

comments powered by Disqus

All articles submitted by third parties or written by My Sunshine Coast come under our Disclaimer / Terms of Service