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Obituaries & Tributes

Obituaries and Tributes 2012 - Page 2

Vale Alan Charles Hawker
Macca and Davis 1950s

Born: 17 April, 1930. Died: 19 April, 2012. 

In 1953, he applied for and was accepted as the Radio Operator at the ANARE (Australian  National Antarctic Research Expeditions) base on Macquarie Island. It was during this period he developed a love for the harsh and often inhospitable environment that he and his fellow expeditioners endured. 

December, 1956, saw Alan sail from North Wharf, Melbourne aboard the Kista Dan bound for Davis Station in Antarctica again as the station Radio Operator. Here along with a small party they commenced and completed the construction of the new base. 

During his time based here, many day and extended expeditions were undertaken to explore this wild and untamed environment. At the end of this expedition they were noted as saying they had spent the busiest and most eventful year of their lives in Antarctica's unique 'desert of stone', the Vestfold Hills.  

Vale Neil Adams
Casey 1994 and Many Summers

Dr Neil Adams, the Manager of the Bureau's Antarctic Meteorological Section, based in Tasmania, died on Friday 23 March 2012 from meningitis after a short illness.

Neil's death is a huge loss to the Bureau and the Antarctic community. He was well known and respected both nationally and internationally for his extensive work in polar meteorology over a 30 year period. 

He was a member of various committees including SCAR (Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research), the Expert Group on Operational Meteorology, the International Commission on Polar Meteorology (ICPM), and the Steering Committee for the annual Antarctic Meteorological Observation, Modelling, and Forecasting Workshop (AMOMFW). 

Most of all he was much liked by his colleagues and friends, and his death is a huge loss  on a personal, as well as a professional level. Neil was warm, funny, friendly, and always an adventurer!

He will be very much missed.

An article in the Hobart Mercury describing Neil's achievements is available on the Mercury newspaper's website

Vale Peter Gormly:  Casey 73, Mawson, AAD HO and Round Trips 1978 - 1995

Des Lugg and Jeff Ayton have advised of the passing of Dr Peter Gormly, formerly Senior Medical Officer of the Australian Antarctic Division. 

Peter died after a brief illness at the Royal Hobart Hospital on 24/3/2012 just shy of his 75th birthday and is survived by his wife , Mrs Lorraine Gormly, and daughter, Kirsty Gormly and family, of Adelaide, and his son Andrew in London.

Peter was born and studied in New Zealand. While working as an orthopaedic surgeon in the remote Isles of Scotland he applied for ANARE in 1972 and was interviewed by Sir Vivian Fuchs. 


He wintered at Casey Station in 1973, returning to Melbourne  AAD Head Office in 1974 to complete human biology and medicine research projects. After a  sojourn at the Canberra Hospital, Peter wintered at Mawson Station in 1977. His medical and surgical expertise was well utilised during the year in medicine and veterinarian practice including a laparotomy for bowel obstruction on Deefa, the Husky. 

Peter was permanently appointed to AAD Head Office as a Medical Officer on 22 November 1978 and was Senior Medical Officer until his retirement in 2007.  He was well known for his skills and experience in first aid, field survival and celestial navigation.  On the former, he was responsible for the famous guides and first aid manuals used by Antarctic expeditioners, mountaineers and trekkers around the world. His short course and guide to celestial navigation was attended by many. 


He will be widely remembered for his realistic and stomach churning simulations and presentations during the pre departure period that put the fear of God and torrid seas into us all!  

In recognition of Dr Peter Gormly's significant contribution to the Antarctic, he was awarded the Australian Antarctic Medal in 1991. He retired from the Australian Antarctic Division in 2007 after an association of 35 years with ANARE and the AAD.


Information supplied by Des Lugg and Jeff Ayton with thanks.  

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