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Callinan, Bernard James

Date of birth:
February 2nd, 1913 (Melbourne/Victoria, Australia)
Date of death:
July 20th, 1995 (Melbourne/Victoria, Australia)
Service number:
VX50081
Nationality:
Australian (1901-present, Federal Monarchy)

Biography

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Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Temporary Major
Unit:
2nd Independent Company, Sparrow Force, Australian Army
Awarded on:
December 23rd, 1943
"For outstanding courage, skill and leadership whilst serving with the Second Australian Independent Company, and later with Lancer Force in Portuguese Timor, between February 1942 and January 1943. Always cheerful, cool and clear thinking, this officer was an inspiration to his men during nearly twelve months of guerrilla fighting against vastly superior numbers of the Japanese and hostile natives. His personal recce’s through enemy occupied country, the valuable information that he brought back and his skilful handling, first of the Company, then the Force, enabled severe casualties to be inflicted on the enemy and our resistance to be maintained for maximum practicable period. When the Force was ordered to evacuate, he skilfully disengaged contact with the enemy, led it for 3 days over mountains, across rivers, and through swamps, and embarked it without loss of personnel. He personally organised the final details of the evacuation and remained on the beach until the last boat left. Before commencing this evacuation he volunteered to remain in Timor to organise native resistance, but was not permitted to do so."
Military Cross (MC)
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Major
Unit:
2nd Independent Company, Sparrow Force, Australian Army
Awarded on:
May 28th, 1943
Mentioned in Dispatches
For exceptional services in the field in the S.W.P. Area.
Period:
Second World War (1939-1945)
Rank:
Temporary Lieutenant Colonel
Unit:
26th Australian Infantry Battalion, Australian Army
Awarded on:
February 14th, 1946
For outstanding courage and devotion at Bougainville in 1945.
Distinguished Service Order (DSO)
Awarded on:
January 1st, 1971

Civilian version
Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)
Awarded on:
October 7th, 1977
Knight Bachelor
Awarded on:
January 26th, 1986
Companion to the Order of Australia (AC)

Sources

Photo