RAAF 100 years
The Governor addresses the large gathering at the RAAF Centenary Celebration at Perth Airport

Celebrating 100 years of the Royal Australian Air Force

In the lead-up to the 100th birthday of the Royal Australian Air Force, the Governor attended a special Commemorative birthday event hosted by RAAF Pearce.

The Centenary Celebration, held at Perth Airport, brought together former and current air force personnel, dignitaries and special guests in recognition of the Air Force’s 100 years of service.

Photo – The Governor with Wing Commander Andrew Brandham and Air Commodore Fiona Dowse AM CSC.

The official 100 year anniversary is on March 31, with a national celebration planned at Government House in Canberra.

As Honorary Commodore the Governor was thrilled to speak at the RAAF Pearce celebration which recognised the incredible dedication and efforts of those who have served before, and also those who currently serve.

“The special RAAF 100th birthday celebration at Perth Airport was just the best occasion I’ve been to in a long time. A wonderful gathering of old warriors, plus the youngsters currently serving, and many other distinguished guests,” said the Governor.

“We heard, particularly in some of the toasts, some great tales of the air force past and projections for the air force future.

The highlight of the evening was a toast by WWII bomber pilot DFC OAM Doug Arrowsmith, a RAAF 460 Squadron veteran who gave the best exposition of how he and his crew survived in the extremely dangerous environment in which they flew,” said the Governor.

“A great tip of his was that he never turned on his auto pilot at any point in the nine hour bombing forays he was often involved in as the two to three seconds it took to take back control could be difference between life and death. It was a tremendous lesson for all gathered.”

“We have much reason to be grateful for those who have served in our air force for the past 100 years and this commemoration was a fitting tribute to them all.”

You can view the national RAAF Centenary Flypast, taking place in Canberra on Wednesday, 31 March, via the ABC TV’s live coverage at 10.30am (AEST).

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