By Murray Mcdermott – Manager at Rowland Village
BORN 04.12.1920 100 AND COUNTING.
Alan Buxton was born in Parramatta on the 4th of December 1920. His parents were John and Mildred Buxton (nee Webb).
Alan Buxton is immensely proud to say that his Great, Great Grandfather was Richard Webb, who, having been sentenced to death in England when he was 16, was transported as a convict to NSW.
Alan had two sisters, Norma, born July 1922, and Joan, born September 1924. When Alan was 6, the family moved to Concord and numerous other suburbs until Alan joined the Australian Imperial Force (AIF) on the 5th of June 1940 and then transferred to the Royal Australian Air Force on the 25th of November 1942.
Alan Buxton served in the Middle East with the AIF, participating in the Syrian Campaign.
He trained at Edmonton Canada, graduated as a navigator, and subsequently served in England on Bomber Commands 617 Squadron (the “Dam Busters”), located at Wood Hall Spa Lincolnshire. At the end of the European war, Alan transferred to the Tiger Air Forces 467 Squadron, formed to go to Okinawa to assist with the attack on Japan. This did not eventuate as a result of the Atom Bombs, and they returned to Australia. Alan was discharged on the 20th of February 1946.
Alan’s highest rank was Flying Officer in the RAAF. An event that stands out in Alan’s memory was in September 1944, the night during final training on the 4 engine Stirling bomber, when they had to bail out because they lost all engines due to fire, fortunately making the coast at Point Clear. It was a traumatic experience, looking through the open hatch at the pitch blackness and not knowing what was below.
Alan Buxton didn’t expect to live this long, as his mother passed away when she was 56 and his father at 69. Alan never smoked, he had a heart attack at 64 and 5 by-passes at 84, so it may be the good medical help available these days which extended his life.
After the war, Alan graduated as an accountant and worked in a public company until retirement at 60.
Alan met Marie at a tennis club in 1938, but didn’t take her out until the 27th of May 1939, taking her to the pictures at the Palatial cinema at Burwood seeing “If I Were King” starring Ronald Colman and “Secret Service of the Air”.
When Alan returned home from the Middle East in early May 1942, Alan proposed to Marie on the 27th of May 1942. They married on the 16th of January 1943. Alan left for training in Canada on the 4th of July 1943. On the 3rd of November, he received news that he had become a father to his firstborn son John Buxton. Later on, Peter was born in February 1948, Marilyn was born in August 1949, and their youngest, Janice was born in August 1952.
Their first home was at North Narrabeen, and their second home was at Eastwood, where they lived for 34 years before coming to Rowland village on the 31st of October 1989.
Alan and Marie have had a wonderful life enjoying many trips over their lifetime, including a sevenmonth, worldwide trip in April 1981, 4 months after retiring.
They were always active with regular tennis, golf and Alan playing competitive cricket at Eastwood for years.
When they arrived at Rowland Village, they immersed themselves in all that was going on.
Since its formation, Alan has been treasurer of the Residents Committee and is still a current member of the Gardening Club, Finance committee, Fellowship prayer group, and more.
Alan and Marie sadly lost their son Peter, aged 63, to kidney cancer. Peter had served in Vietnam and had been exposed to chemicals whilst there.
Alan lost Marie in August 2017.
They proudly have 10 grandchildren, 23 great grandchildren and 6 great, great grandchildren.