CROFTS (nee CAMERON), Corporal Mavis May 96856

Studio portrait of 96856 Corporal Mavis May CAMERON, the photographer is unknown,. From the Robyn KLUSKE collection (nee CROFTS).

Mavis May CAMERON was born at Victor Harbor on 23 September 1917, the third of four children of Albert Robert CAMERON and Ruby May CAMERON (nee MILLS). She was educated at Victor Harbor Primary and High Schools and was living at Murray Bridge when she enlisted in the Women’s Auxiliary Australian Air Force on 27 July 1942. 

Mavis underwent basic training at No 1 Initial Training School (ITS) at Mt Breckan, Victor Harbor; she was mustered for training as a nursing orderly and was later posted to the RAAF Hospital Wing at Royal Adelaide Hospital. 

Promoted to corporal in October 1943, Mavis was later posted to No 1 RAAF Hospital at Laverton (Vic) and then No 7 RAAF Hospital, Adelaide. On 21 January 1945, Mavis married Ted Crofts (415969 LAC Edwin Leslie CROFTS), a RAAF instrument fitter. She elected for early discharge and was demobilised on 8 May 1945. There were two children of the marriage, Robyn and Cathy.

Mavis died on 13 July 1988 and is buried in the Victor Harbor Cemetery. Her brothers Gilbert Leith CAMERON (Army, SX9371 Pte GL CAMERON) and Leonard (Len) Colin CAMERON (Army, SX8868 Lt LC CAMERON) both served during World War Two. Len was killed in action in New Guinea on 4 September 1943).


Service file of 96856 Corporal Mavis May CAMERON, purchased from the National Archives of Australia.

Information and photographs provided by daughter Mrs Robyn KLUSKE (nee CROFTS).

Compiled by the Victor Harbor RSL History Research Team, April 2011.

Portrait of WAAAF trainees following the completion of their basic training at No 4 Initial Training School, Mt Breckan, Victor Harbor in mid-August 1942. Mavis is in the back row. far right (marked with X).
Major Ron HUGHES (72 Major, later Major-General, Ronald Laurence HUGHES) was living in Murray Bridge when he enlisted at Duntroon. Being from Murray Bridge, he must have known the CAMERON family, perhaps he knew them whilst at school.
Portrait of SX9371 PTE Gilbert Leith CAMERON, he is shown here holding the rank of Corporal, whereas the World War Two nominal roll records his rank on demobilisation as Private. His service file at the National Archives is not yet available online so we are unable to explain the rank difference at this time.
Leonard, Mavis and Gilbert are shown here at their parent’s home in Murray Bridge. Leonard and Mavis are on leave, as is Gilbert who chose to be photographed in civvies. The date is most likely after Mavis graduated from No 4 ITS in late August 1942 and before September 1943 when Leonard was killed in New Guinea.
Mavis is shown with her mother at the family home in Murray Bridge.
This photograph shows Mavis in nursing uniform and was most likely taken at Laverton (Vic).
Mavis (rear, right) is shown with three of her colleagues at Laverton.
A very young looking Ted CROFTS (415969 LAC Edwin Leslie CROFTS) enlisted in the RAAF on 26 April 1942, age 22.