AAA Coral Sea Commemoration DinnerShare Event on Facebook Share Event on Twitter Share Event on LinkedIn
Gordon Johnson is a fine old sea dog with an intimate knowledge of the Battle of the Coral Sea because he was there as a telegrapher on the HMAS Hobart. But he will be a happy old sea dog when the Australian Government officially recognizes this battle for its significance and not as just a generalisation that is called the War in the Pacific.
The dinner to commemorate the anniversary of that battle is a special one on the social calendar of the Australian American Association and I was lucky to be sitting at the table named for the HMAS Hobart with Gordon and his wife Fleur, Sir Angus and Lady (Liz) Houston and Colonel Doug and Chele Sachs where what I needed to know to understand this battle was right at hand. It was famously the first battle where the view from the bridge was not to eyeball the enemy but a seaview to the unseen, and it was all up to the pilots.
There was a message from PM Tony Abbott and President Obama, a fine speech from Sir Angus extrapolating the detail of what came after the battle and from Gordon a heartfelt hope that recognition will come. With Sir Angus ‘aboard’ I reckon it might.