HAFS Journal May 2023 – Vol 17 No 1 – Of ships and mysteries


Editorial by Charles Sherlock 
A demographic view of the Hungerford family, Part 3 by Judith Aubin & Pauline Tyrrell 
Alan Colless: a fine Navy career by Michael Kenneth Colless 
John Kellerman Adey - a distinguished psychiatrist by Pauline Tyrrell 
Edward Williams: finding missing parents with DNA by Davina Hall Best 


Two intriguing articles about the Navy, and two mysteries approaching Agatha Christie standard – these are what await readers in this issue.
The sinking of the AHS Centaur eighty years ago is one of the darkest events in Australian wartime history. More sailors may have been lost in other tragedies, but this was the sinking of a well-marked hospital ship that had carried the sick and wounded from both sides of the conflict. Judith Aubin (W.7.5a.2b.1c.1d) and Pauline Tyrrell (E.2.4a.10b.1c.2d=) document the story, focussing on George Arthur Winder (W.7.5a.2b.2c) one of those killed.
Alan Colless, husband of Phyllis Hungerford (E.7.1a.2b.1c) joined the Navy at fifteen: Michael Colless (E.7.1a.2b.1c.4d) tells his story. Serving on HMAS Sydney during its battle with SMS Emden in World War I, Alan was later wounded and invalided out in 1920. The Australian War Memorial chose his image to represent the Navy in the ‘Spirit of Anzac’ exhibition for the centenary of World War I. John Kellerman Adey (W.1.2a.1b.1c), son of a sea captain, was unknown to HAFS until recently.1 Pauline Tyrrell (E.2.4a.10b.1c.2d=) was able to research his life and uncover the story of a man whose war service and contributions to
mental health are both impressive and long-standing.
Davina Hall Best (E.2.2a.2b.4c.2d.1e) has done wonders in teasing out the origins of Edward Williams, using DNA and HAFS contacts. In the process she discloses a more hopeful perspective on his life than a quick overview might show. Davina’s research drew on evidence from DNA and Edward’s children, and enquiries to HAFS – our informative website is an asset here.
Lesley Greenwood (E.2.7a.3b.9c.1d), reviewing this issue, noted that three of the stories (on Colless, Adey and Williams) are about overcoming circumstances that arise in blended families. Each family’s predicament is dealt with in different ways. In the Colless family, the eldest daughter took her siblings with her, and her brother joined the Navy. The Adey half-brothers both triumphed in their professional careers in part due to the early support of extended family. And although a long time coming, the Williams/Barton family finally had an answer to their genealogical puzzle. While all are unique, there are many such families as these with similar tales.
Charles Sherlock AM (E.4.1a.6b.5c.1d)


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