Smoke em if you got em

Australian National Maritime Museum Object number 00049309

Australian National Maritime Museum Object number 00049309

Bill Ettershank (owner/skipper) of the KEWARRA, lights one up while out looking for anything unusual in WWII as part of the Australian Volunteer Coastal Patrol. Note the binnacle and sail boom.

This image belongs in a collection that includes many images of members and vessels operated by the Volunteer Coastal Patrol (VCP) in the 1940s. It is believed most of the photographs were taken by the professional photographer and patrol member Peter Luke. Luke’s yacht WAYFARER served with the Volunteer Coastal Patrol on Sydney Harbour and along the NSW coast until the war ended in 1945. In 1944 Peter Luke was one of the co-founders of the Cruising Yacht Club and the Sydney to Hobart yacht race.

The Volunteer Coastal Patrol, the oldest voluntary sea rescue organization in Australia, was established on 27 March 1937.

When World War II was declared in 1939, members of the Patrol affirmed their desire to serve their country as a volunteer service by patrolling Australia’s waterways. In 1940 the Patrol had some 500 vessels and 2,000 members on its register– much the same as the Corsair Fleet formed by volunteers in their personal boats under the aegis of the U.S. Coast Guard at the same time.

During the war, Australian Coastal Patrol members became special constables and guarded commercial wharves, oil installations and bridges. By the war’s end, patrol vessels had patrolled 128,000 miles of harbor and coastal waters and donated 393,000-man-hours of unpaid war service. They were granted the right to fly the Police Nemesis pennant as recognition of this service and the right to fly the New South Wales State Flag as their ensign.

The VCP continued to operate in the post-war period in a purely voluntary capacity, constituting an important element in national security. Its objectives were rewritten to make the organization of value to the country in times of emergency as well as peace. In 1974 Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth bestowed the ‘Royal’ prefix to the Volunteer Coastal Patrol, and the group survives to this day in much the same role as the U.S. Coast Guard Auxillary.

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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as GUNS.com, Univesity of Guns, Outdoor Hub, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms Talk.com, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at Amazon.com as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the US federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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