Sunshine Coast hero honoured 75 years on

Published: Comments:
Community Indigenous & Heritage Lifestyle Sunshine Coast Council

Social:   
Cr Mike Cornwell from Fenland District Council in England, Alan Hocking and Mayor Mark Jamieson 2016

World War II RAAF Pilot Officer Jim Hocking from Nambour will be honoured by the town of March in the United Kingdom on Saturday 27 July for his heroic efforts that saved many lives.

Pilot Officer Jim Hocking made the brave decision to sacrifice his own life to save his crew and the residents of the town of March in Fenland, Cambridgeshire, 75 years ago, on 28 July 1944.

The 21-year-old from Nambour was on his final training flight when the bomber’s engine caught fire. He ordered his crew to parachute to safety while he stayed in the Stirling bomber to divert it from crashing into the town and killing hundreds of people.

Pilot Officer Hocking was posthumously awarded the Australian Bravery Award the Star of Courage for his actions.

His heroic act has never been forgotten by the town of March, which is around 120 kilometres north of London.  Its municipal government – the Fenland District Council – enjoys a longstanding Friendship Agreement with the Sunshine Coast Council, anchored in remembering the efforts of Pilot Officer Hocking.

This weekend the March Museum will honour Pilot Officer Hocking with an event to give people the chance to listen to letters written by him. The letters will be read by his family members.

A book on Pilot Officer Hocking’s life and actions - March Hero, written by Sunshine Coast journalist and author Dot Whittington will also be showcased at the event.

The BBC has honoured our region’s war hero with a radio segment on his actions which will air on Sunday and can be listened to online through the BBC app.

Pilot Officer Jim Hocking’s brother Alan Hocking said it would be an emotional day for his family, but they were honoured that the townspeople of March still remembered and continued to honour Jim.

“Out of the tragedy of war a lasting friendship has developed with so many families in the March area, and March is now a second home to members of the Hocking family,” Mr Hocking said.

“The March War Museum has a permanent display which includes maps, a model of Jim in his pilot’s uniform and I have also provided them with a replica set of Jim’s medals.”

Councillor Jenny McKay has known the Hocking family for many years and said it is important we continue to honour Pilot Officer Hocking and his heroic deeds.

“I have now known his brother Alan who has kept the story of his heroic deeds of his brother that saved lives and now has allowed Nambour State College students to aim each year for the prestigious Jim Jockey Award. Through this, I feel I too have known Jim,” Cr McKay said.   

Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said Jim’s sacrifice led to the establishment in 1997 of a Friendship City Agreement between Fenland District Council and the former Maroochy Shire Council which continued with the formation of Sunshine Coast Council in 2008. This agreement was renewed by both councils in 2017, on the 20th anniversary of the agreement.

Mayor Jamieson said the Mutual Friendship Charter is based on a shared desire to pursue friendly relations and promote cooperation and understanding between the two areas.

“We have had many years of encouraging community connections between our two areas and opportunities for knowledge and skills transfer - and will continue to do so,” Mayor Jamieson said.

The brave pilot has not been forgotten in Nambour either and details of his gallantry are on display in the Nambour Museum’s Remembrance Room, and his service medals are prominently displayed at the Nambour RSL. In addition, a special award is given each year by the Nambour RSL to a student at the Nambour High School where Pilot Officer Hocking was a foundation student.

Pilot Officer Hocking is buried in Cambridge Cemetery, where the inscription on his headstone reads: "Nobly he lived. Nobly he died. Ever remembered."

 
Sunshine Coast Regional Council :
Locked Bag 72 Sunshine Coast Mail Centre Q 4560, Sunshine Coast Wide
07 5475 7272
1300 007 272
Sunshine Coast Regional Council
Showing 10+ recent articles for this business
Mayor thanks outgoing Lightning coach 20 August 2019 | Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson has recognised Sunshine Coast Lightning Head Coach Noeline Taurua for an outstanding job in the wake of today’s announcement that she will leave the club at the end of this... More information...
Gardens to become a living gallery during Horizon 20 August 2019 | Kite making, artist talks, a sculpture exhibition, life drawing and jewellery making are just some of the creative activities set to transform the Maroochy Regional Bushland Botanic Garden during Horizon Festival... More information...
Busby Marou – Performing at Venue 114 16 August 2019 | Much loved Australian duo Busby Marou will perform at Venue 114 on Saturday 26 October. More information...
Exclusive look inside the future of business and innovation 19 August 2019 | Serial entrepreneur and investor of Shark Tank fame Glen Richards joins former Microsoft executive Kathryn Foster, UpRamp founder Scott Brown from Boulder Colorado, entrepreneur Ron Hill and Sunshine Coast Deputy... More information...
Planning scheme amendment proposed to preserve heritage 16 August 2019 | Dating back to the 1940s, the quaint little Maroochy River boathouses jetties of Bradman Avenue have become an iconic part of our Sunshine Coast's rich history. More information...
Commonwealth and State support for 2032 Olympic and Paralympic bid welcomed 16 August 2019 | The coming together for the first time last week of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, Council of Mayors SEQ Chair Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner and John Coates from the AOC to... More information...
Plenty on offer during Seniors Week 2019 on the Sunshine Coast 15 August 2019 | From ballet workshops to a lifestyle expo there’s something to suit every taste during Seniors Week 2019 on the Sunshine Coast. More information...
Kids and families are in for a treat during Horizon Festival 14 August 2019 | Whether you are two or fifty-two, Horizon has kids and families covered in 2019. From circus acts to rock shows and nature playgroups to kite making, there are plenty of activities for the young and young at heart... More information...
Beloved pop star Amy Shark set to thrill Sunshine Coast fans 14 August 2019 | One of Australia’s most impressive and beloved pop exports, Amy Shark, is coming to Sunshine Coast Council’s Venue 114 on Friday 18 October. More information...
Fabulous foodie festival dishes up mouth-watering morsels 14 August 2019 | The Curated Plate’s inaugural four days of food events kicked off in style and locals and visitors alike jumped at the chance to be part of it. More information...



Social:   
comments powered by Disqus

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