The Last Post has sounded for the last digger to see active service: Evan Allen, 106, died last week and was laid to rest in a state funeral today. From the Australian:
Born in Bega in New South Wales in July 1899, Mr Allan enlisted in the Royal Australian Navy as a boy sailor at the outbreak of World War I when he was only 14 years old.
As an able seaman, he was a member of the crew of HMAS Encounter from 1915 until 1918.
He sailed in the Pacific and also in the Indian Ocean escorting troop ship convoys.
Mr Allan served in the Royal Australian Navy for 34 years and also saw service in World War II.
During World War II, he served at sea in the Royal Navy armed merchant cruiser HMS Moreton Bay, as well as at Flinders Naval Depot, as Piermaster at HMAS Ladava at Milne Bay, New Guinea, in 1944, aboard HMAS Australia and as an instructor at HMAS Cerberus.
Mr Allan retired from the navy in 1947 with the rank of lieutenant.
He had lived as a boy on a family property in Upper Brogo, NSW, and after leaving the navy returned to the land, this time on a small farm near Frankston, Victoria.
In 1999, Mr Allan received the 80th Anniversary Armistice Remembrance Medal, awarded to all living Australian World War I veterans.
He was also awarded the King’s Silver Jubilee Medal in 1935, the King’s Coronation Medal in 1937 and the Australian Centenary Medal for the 2001 Centenary of Federation.
Mr Allan … is survived by his daughter Judith Blake and grandchildren Duncan and Philippa.