75th Anniversary of No. 35 Squadron (35SQN)
Date(s) - 15/09/2017
By Eamon Hamilton
A FUNCTION to celebrate the 75th anniversary of No. 35 Squadron (35SQN) will be held on September 15 in Sydney’s northwest.The function will be an opportunity for past and present members of 35SQN to reunite and celebrate the unit’s history.Commanding Officer of 35SQN, WGCDR Jarrod Pendlebury, said the function was open for all past members of the unit, along with those with a strong association to 35SQN.
“There’s been a strong spirit of camaraderie fostered within 35SQN’s ranks throughout our history, and it’s something we are keen to grow with the current generation,” WGCDR Pendlebury said.
“All those who have been posted to ‘Wallaby Airlines’ are part of a rich and unique history, which will be celebrated at this function.”
Established on 11 March 1942 as one of the RAAF’s original four transport units, 35SQN had humble origins at RAAF Base Pearce.It flew an odd assortment of small twin-engine transports, carrying up to eight passengers at a time, on missions across Australia.By the war’s end, it was flying the ubiquitous C-47 Dakota transport on missions into New Guinea and the then Dutch East Indies, before disbanding in June 1946.The delivery of the DHC-4 Caribou in 1964 – coupled with the type’s deployment to Vietnam that same year – would signal the second coming of 35SQN.
“In 1966, the RAAF Transport Flight Vietnam was re-designated 35SQN, although it was popularly known by then as ‘Wallaby Airlines’,” WGCDR Pendlebury said.
“Following Vietnam, 35SQN operated from RAAF Bases Richmond and then Townsville, where we were again disestablished in 1999.”
For much of 35SQN’s time in Townsville, the unit was the only RAAF flying squadron to be equipped with both helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft.
“There’s many different chapters to our history, but much of it has seen 35SQN committed to supporting Defence personnel at the frontline,” WGCDR Pendlebury said.
“That’s a narrative we’re very much embarked upon now with the C-27J Spartan that we are introducing to service.”
Re-established at RAAF Base Richmond in 2013, the squadron delivered its first Spartan to Australia in mid-2015. Permanent facilities for 35SQN are being constructed at RAAF Base Amberley, where it will move to by early 2019. Past members of 35SQN, and others with an association with the squadron, are invited to contact us. Click Here To Find Out More