AUSTRALIAN SGT. R.A.A.F. 1939 ROLEX OYSTER GNTS WWII WRIST WATCH REF 2280. The original dial has illuminous batons & numbers, outer minute tracking and sub seconds, signed Rolex Oyster Royal swiss made. The 30mm steel oyster case is signed in the back Oyster watch co geneva swiss SAR with patents and numbered on the back 98877 2280. The original rolex crown screws down and is signed. The manual wound 17j movement is working but may need a service to keep time, fully signed Rolex. Presents well and is unpolished. ENGRAVED TO BACK “NO.752 SGT J. ODONNELL R.A.A.F RATHMINES N.S.W AUSTRALIA 10-9-39”
RAAF Base Rathmines was a Royal Australian Air Force base located on Lake Macquarie in New South Wales.
RAAF Base Rathmines was established in 1939 and was the RAAF's main flying boat base during World War II and the early 1950s. During World War II aircraft based at Rathmines conducted anti-submarine patrols along the Australian east coast and the base was home to the RAAF's main seaplane training units. In addition, detachments from Squadrons based at Rathmines flew numerous offensive mine laying missions into Japanese-held territory (due to Rathmines distance from the front line, these aircraft staged through bases in Northern Australia when travelling to and from their targets). Rathmines was also the RAAF Maritime Section's main training base.
After the RAAF retired its flying boats in 1952 RAAF Base Rathmines was used as a ground-training base for, among others, officers, senior non-commissioned officers, physical training instructors, national servicemen and recruits until being closed in 1960/61. When the base closed a large hangar, complete with electrically operated doors and used for servicing seaplanes, was pulled down and half of the very high building shipped to RAAF Base Richmond to house the RAAF's then-new C-130 Hercules aircraft.
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