Maddington resident recalls his Australian Army service in World War II

Arthur Hubbard. Picture: Marcelo Palacios d248834
Arthur Hubbard. Picture: Marcelo Palacios d248834

ARTHUR Hubbard, of Maddington, put his hand up to join the Australian Army fighting in World War II when he was only 15.

The Kellerberrin-born teenager had already been working on mines in the Goldfields since the age of 12.

‘I was more or less pretty old for my age,’ he said.

‘My friend and I had been working cutting logs and we ran out of bush.

‘We were talking about what to do next when he said, ‘I think I’ll go in the army,’ and I thought, I may as well do the same.’

The pair decided to tell authorities they were 17 years old so they could sign up, and then on second thoughts, opted for 21, so they would not have to ask their parents for permission to enlist.

Missing the last draft to the Middle East, Mr Hubbard ended up serving in Papua New Guinea from 1944 until 1946, when he was discharged.

‘It wasn’t much good,’ he said. ‘It was pretty tough going.’

Now 90 years old, Mr Hubbard lost his driver’s licence last year because of poor eyesight, so will stay home today during Remembrance Day services.

But he said he would still observe a minute’s silence at 11am.

‘I’ll just remember the friends I lost,’ he said.

– Gosnells Returned and Services League sub-branch will hold a Remembrance Day service this morning at Gosnells War Memorial, next to the City of Gosnells Civic Centre on Albany Highway. Assemble at 10.50am.

The City of Gosnells is co-ordinating its own Anzac centenary poppy project to commemorate the Anzac centenary and honour City of Gosnells servicemen and women.

The event will involve handknitted poppies to be displayed in City libraries, the Addie Mills Centre, Leisure World and Civic Centre from now until after centenary celebrations.

For a list of City-hosted knitting sessions or more information on the poppy project, phone 9391 6000.