SX33831 Lance Sergeant Geoffrey James FRASER
Geoffrey James FRASER was born at Hyde Park, South Australia on 13 November 1925, the fourth and youngest child of Norman Symon Albert FRASER and Lisette Dorothy FRASER (nee BrookS). His family had moved from Hamley Bridge in 1934 and had taken up new farming land in the Waitpinga area. Geoff, as he was known, was 18 years old, single and working as a bank clerk at the time of his enlistment in the 2nd AIF on 28 September 1944.
Geoff reported for duty at the Regional Recruiting and General Duties Depot, Wayville and the following day was granted three days leave to prepare for a posting to an interstate training unit. He returned from leave on 3 October 1944 and the same day entrained for the 2nd Australian Recruit Training Battalion at Cowra, NSW arriving on there 7 October.
On 14 December 1944, having completed his initial training, he was posted to the Australian Infantry Training Battalion and undertook further training in a number of locations in NSW including a short period with the 2nd Australian Infantry Special Group. On 11 January 1945, Geoff was admitted to the 11th Australian Camp Hospital (in fact the Cowra District Hospital) suffering from tonsillitis. He returned to his unit six days later.
On 27 June 1945, Geoff was posted to the Australian Training Centre (Jungle Warfare) at Cunungra, Queensland and given two months of jungle training before being posted to the 5th Reinforcement Depot, in readiness for overseas service. By mid-1945 the war was going well for the Allies and the number of men being sent overseas was diminishing. On 15 January, he was again admitted to hospital and diagnosed with varicella (chicken-pox); he was quarantined and did not return to his unit until 16 February 1945.
On 27 September 1945, Geoff was transferred back to Adelaide in the 4th Military District Accounts Office, which included short periods at the 121st Australian General Hospital and Loveday Internment Camp. On 12 March 1946, Geoff was promoted to corporal and on 25 June was further promoted to lance-sergeant. Geoff was demobilised on 6 January 1947. He later married Constance (Connie) Ethel SMITH and there were three children of the marriage. Geoff and Connie farmed at Waitpinga until his early death on 13 June 1974 at the age of 48.
Service file of SX33831 Geoffrey James FRASER, purchased from the National Archives of Australia (www.naa.gov.au ), made possible by a grant from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
Compiled by the Victor Harbor RSL History Research Team, July 2011.