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Reunited after 70 Years

Longer term residents of the area will know the McGillivray family of Lethbridge – including Jean, (Mrs. Max Donaldson, dec.), Eric, dec. and Wallace (Wal).

Wal served in the AIF in New Guinea and the Islands during World War 2, where he was a signaller attached to a Commando Unit, an instructor in Commando Training and was highly trained to work alone in top secret missions behind enemy lines.

Just before Anzac Day this year, Wal received word that Havalla Lualu, the last surviving Fuzzy Wuzzy Angel, was to be at functions in Melbourne around Anzac Day. 

The Fuzzy Wuzzy Angels were a group of indigenous New Guineans who displayed incredible heroism aiding Allied forces on the Kakoda Track during World War 2. They were responsible for carrying many of our wounded men to safety over the extraordinarily difficult terrain, and on their return trip providing our forces with food and ammunition so they could keep fighting.

To quote Wal: ‘I arrived at the hall to see him sitting on the stage looking sad and lonely, so I went straight up to him and spoke to him in my rusty Pidgin’. Wal’s Pidgin can’t have been too bad, as they were able to converse, and confirm that they had served together all those years ago.

Havalla Lualu came from a little village called Kagi, about 3K from Isurava, which is on the Kakoda Track. He now has moved to Port Moresby so he can receive better medical care. Wal and his wife Lorna live in suburban Melbourne.

We salute two 93 year old heroes who helped to protect our country all those years ago, to give us the chance to live the life of freedom we now so thoughtlessly take for granted.

Lex Stray