Thursday, April 25, 2024

WWII veteran remembered as loving family man

World War II veteran, Noel Mooney, has been fondly remembered by family after passing away on July 9 at the age of 96.

Born in Bundaberg, Noel dedicated his life to family, friends and the local community.

His eldest daughter, Lucy Field, has shared her memories of the man that was always happy to give.

She said Noel served in New Guinea as a member of the Royal Australian Air Force of the 8th Squadron during World War II.

“Dad was in the Air Force, now at the time he had three older brothers who had already joined up and we believe he faked his age to get in and join them,” Lucy said.

“He was an aircraft electrician and was sent to New Guinea, and in 1946 he was demobilised and came back to Australia within six months of the end of the war.

“He was a single man, so he had to wait for the married men to go home first.”

Within a year of returning to Australia, Noel met his future wife, Kath, at a dance in Kingaroy and the pair were happily married for 52 years and shared seven children.

“My father trained as a plumber and he was very hard working,” Lucy said.

“I remember he could turn his hand to anything.

“He met my mum and they married in Kingaroy before building a house on Branyan Street where they raised a family.”

Lucy said her parents started a plumbing business, Noel and Kath Mooney Plumbing, and her father’s hard work and determination was passed on from one generation to the next.

“Two of his sons went on to become plumbers,” Lucy said.

“Dad had 14 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.

“He was also a keen fisherman who taught most of the kids how to fish – he enjoyed passing on his knowledge.

“I think what I learnt in retrospect from my dad, that with so many kids you have to be firm.

“But his golden rule was always to treat others with respect.”

After Noel’s wife passed away, he spent his remaining years with his second wife, Betty, who passed away three days after him on July 12th.

Noel Mooney
Noel Mooney with his friend and fellow ex-serviceman Mervan McGrane spent time together before Noel’s passing.

Noel was heavily involved in his local church, spent time with Bundaberg’s other World War II Veterans, was a passionate member of the local Rotary andalso found the time to perfect his bowling on the greens at Burnett Bowls Club.

“Dad lived a full life, and he had so many people at his funeral – it was unexpected and lovely to see how he had touched so many people’s lives in the community,” says Lucy.

This article first appeared in Bundaberg Now.

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