3 Squadron LIFETIMES

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Eric George BAKER

1 January 1921 – 9 November 2012

Eric was one of the four surviving ‘3 Squadron Originals’ who, on 10 July 2010, re-created the Squadron’s 1940 ‘March-Out’ from the old ceremonial gate at Richmond on its 70th anniversary.

Eric enlisted with the RAAF in November 1939, at the age of 18. He trained at Point Cook and was then transferred to 3SQN, marching out from Richmond to confront the might of the Italian Empire as an Aircraftsman AC1, skilled in radio operation. Eric spent a total of three years in the Middle East and then served in mainland Australia, New Guinea, Bougainville and New Britain.

He returned from the war as a Warrant Officer and was discharged in September 1945. He always proudly marched with his mates at each Anzac Day parade.

It was during the war that he met his wife Jean who was a servicewoman. Happily married to Jean until she passed away in 2005, they are survived by their two daughters, Carolyn and Yvonne. Eric and Jean were a unit who worked tirelessly for very many community organisations.

Eric was a huge support to Jean during her 24 years as a City of Heidelberg Councillor, including two terms as Mayor.

Two of Eric’s favourite charities were Melbourne Legacy and Hi-City Industries, a sheltered workshop in West Heidelberg.

He was the Chairman of Rosanna Bowling Club for two years in 1990-92 and then became Secretary/Manager for a total of seven years and was awarded a Life Membership in 1999 for his outstanding contribution to the Club.

Eric was also President of the Northern Melbourne branch of Legacy and as such, in 1990, planted a small living legacy of his own – a thriving Sugar Gum in a memorial avenue originally established by WW1 diggers in a nearby repatriation hospital (Cherry St, Macleod, Central Victoria). Eric planted his tree to honour the fallen of World War II.

3 Squadron LIFETIMES

3 Squadron RAAF HOME / Search