12th (Jarrah) VDC Battalion
From Our Contribution
Volunteer Defence Corps (VDC) Battalions were initially raised outside the military framework by the RSL who were keen to be involved in any defence of Australia. Formed in July 1940 they had no formal role, until they were taken over by the Army and incorporated in the CMF on 15 May 1941. Other civilian units included the Vulnerable Points Guard and the Post Office Volunteer Corps. Once taken over they were tasked with being prepared to strengthen/reinforce Garrison Battalions who were formed to contribute to the defence of Australia; provide staff for internment camps; and guard vulnerable points. Original recruitment was men with previous Imperial Military Service, those under 60 being available for full time duties. In February 1940 4,464 men were enlisted in Western Australian VDC units. Australia wide there were 110 VDC Battalions in October 1942. Australia wide there were 49 fatalities amongst VDC personnel, with one in Western Australia.
The 12th (Jarrah) VDC Battalion was formed from the over strength 4th (Bunbury) VDC Battalion, taking in forestry and sawmill towns in the Jarrah forest belt from Karragullen to Collie and agricultural areas around Boddington and Darkan. 'A' Company was formed around Jarrahdale, Carinyah (Smailes MIll) and Bedfordale; 'B' Company around Dwellingup, Whittakers Mill, Banksiadale, Holyoake, Chadoora, Hakea, Tullis and Wuraming; 'C' Company around Mornington Mill, Hoffman Mill, Harvey, and Boddington; and 'D' Coy around Colie, Darkan, Lyalls mill, Worsley Mill, Wellington Mill, Buckingham Mill, Duranillin, Wandering and Banksiadale. On July 1942 unit strength was 690. Battalion HQ was at Harvey, but moved to Pinjarra in February 1943. With the reduction in concern about a Japanese invasion, and the presence of full time military units north of Perth, 12th (Jarrah) VDC Battalion was placed in reserve in July 1944. Some members continued to parade, although no longer a part of the Army, and VDC battalions were not formally disbanded until mid-1946.
Members of the VDC were awarded the Australian Service Medal 1939-45 for three years part time service. Some who served full time qualified for the War Medal 1939-45.
- George Arthur Anderson 24 Apr 1942 - 1 Oct 1943
- Herbert Arthur Batt 24 Apr 1942 - ??
- Edward Francis Bowring 25 May 1942 - 31 Jul 1944
- Patrick William Bryant 28 Jul 1942 - ??
- Ernest Henry Chisholm 28 Jul 1942 - ??
- Frederick Joseph Clough 28 Jul 1942 - ??
- John Deering 16 Jan 1942 - ??
- Ronald Francis Deering 5 Jul 1942 - ??
- Philip Emanuel Ellice 5 Jul 1942 - ??
- Joseph Frankel 19 Mar 1942 - ??
- Henry (Neil) Fretwell 20 Apr 1942 - ??
- Edward Halpern 26 Mar 1942 - ??
- Allan Cuthbert Harris 22 Mar 1942 - 15 Oct 1945
- William Hart 22 Mar 1942 - 15 Oct 1945
- Claude Vincent Kinsella 26 Apr 1942 - 15 Oct 1945
- Thomas Kavanagh Kinsella 2 Dec 1942 - ??
- Alexander Baird Larsen 7 May 1942 - ??
- Ernest John Henry Mathews 28 Jul 1942 - ??
- Samuel James Mathews 1 Aug 1941 - ??
- Bernard Francis McGarry 24 Apr 1942 - 8 Jan 1943
- Charles Frederick McKay 24 Apr 1942 - ??
- Ernest Malcom McSwain 16 Jul 1942 - ??
- Cornelious Martin Murphy 22 Mar 1942 - ??
- Llewellyn Joseph Hawthorn Newman 2 Apr 1942 - 15 Oct 1945
- Herbert Alfred Nicholls 22 Mar 1942 - ??
- Francis Joseph O'Keeffe 16 Jul 1942 - 21 Apr 1944
- Jan Albert Rosenberg 26 Mar 1942 - ??
- Charles Vernon Rutherford 26 Apr 1942 - ??
- Edward Martin Smailes 20 Apr 1942 - ??
- Horace Harold Smith 15 Jul 1942 - ??
- George Edward Stevens ?? - ??
- Thomas Patrick Sullivan 24 Apr 1942 - 15 Oct 1945
- Aron Walf Willner 26 Mar 1942 - 24 Mar 1944
Content has come from The Unit Guide - Volume 6 - The Australian Army 1939-1945 - pages 6.084 & 6.085 - Graham R McKenzie-Smith - Big Sky Publishing - 2018