David George PERRIAM

PERRIAM, David George

Service Numbers: SX28756, S110112
Enlisted: 1 March 1943, Woodside, SA
Last Rank: Private
Last Unit: 2nd/48th Infantry Battalion
Born: Adelaide, South Australia, 2 February 1924
Home Town: Mount Gambier, Mount Gambier, South Australia
Schooling: Mount Gambier High School, South Australia
Occupation: Accountant
Died: Western Australia, 10 May 2016, aged 92 years, cause of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Pinnaroo Valley Chapel & Crematorium
Padbury, Joondalup City, WA Elements Garden Wall N 0010
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World War 2 Service

1 Mar 1943: Involvement Private, SN SX28756
1 Mar 1943: Involvement Private, SN S110112
1 Mar 1943: Enlisted Woodside, SA
1 Mar 1943: Enlisted Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, SN SX28756, 2nd/48th Infantry Battalion
18 Jan 1946: Discharged
18 Jan 1946: Discharged Australian Military Forces (Army WW2), Private, SN SX28756, 2nd/48th Infantry Battalion

Witnessed Historic Surrender

David George PERRIAM SX28756
Decima and Roy Vercoe Perriam had three children, Margaret Julie and David, who was born on 2nd February, 1924 in Adelaide. Roy had served in WWI and it was on his return in 1919 that he married Decima. The family moved to Mount Gambier, SA, a thriving country town situated mid-way between Adelaide and Melbourne. Probably its most unique natural features including being the home of the Blue Lake and stunning underground caves. There, Roy was part of the firm, Boothey and Perriam, a construction company, which was responsible for many of the local buildings both pre and post WWII.
David initially attended Mount Gambier Primary School, returning in ’36 as an old scholar during Education week to presented what the ‘Border Watch’ described as a ‘pretty speech’ to the official guests, including the Chief Inspector of Schools. David also attended Mount Gambier High School, where he was consistently amongst the high achievers. In First year (Year 8) he was in the top five of his class in English, Latin, French, History, Maths II and Science. He gained his Leaving Certificate In his third year there with passes in a variety of subjects including French, English, Latin and Physics. He was also elected as a Prefect that year and the following when he also gained his Leaving Certificate. Post school in mid-1940, David moved to Adelaide with the May ‘Border Watch’ delightedly informing readers that David was appointed to the office staff of Gerard and Goodman and would to continue his Accountancy studies.
David was a member of the militia as S110112. However, with the outbreak of WWII he enlisted to serve on the 1st March ’43 at Woodside, just after his 19th birthday. He rose to the rank of Lance/Corporal, and was able to spend his July ’43 leave with his parents back at Mount Gambier. He later relinquished his promotions to return to being a Private. He was fortunate to be a witness to the historic signing of the surrender of the 2nd Japanese Army at Morotai in September ‘45. The local ‘Border Watch’ reported that he had sent home to his mother ‘a coloured card signed by the Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Army (General T. A. Blamey). Pte. Perriam was presented with the card, which read -"Issued to the members of the Allied forces at Morotai on the occasion of the surrender of the Second Japanese Army." The address on the card was Advanced Headquarters, Morotai, 9th September, 1945.
Back home, David and Cynthia Wilson Miller became engaged in August 1946. The next year they married on June 7th, 1947 at Christ Church in Mount Gambier. Cynthia chose David’s sister, Julie as her bridesmaid. David chose his long-standing school friend and fellow Prefect from Mount Gambier High days, Charles Miller, as his best man. (David and Charles had both left Mount Gambier High School to take up employment positions in mid-1940). After a brief honeymoon in Adelaide, David and Cynthia returned to settle in the Mount. He was then officially discharged on January 18th 1946. David and Cynthia welcomed two sons the first, John on August ’48 and the second, Peter in September ’52, both born in Mount Gambier. Other siblings, Brian, Jane and Elizabeth completed the family. Young John proudly placed a ‘good luck’ horseshoe on his Aunt Julie’s arm at her wedding in January of ’52.
While continuing to enjoy both his carpentry and accounting, David also joined the Old Scholars A grade tennis team in the Mount Gambier Church and District team. He was also a regular participant in the R.S.L. Rifle Club and was actively involved as an RSL delegate on the Mount Gambier Agricultural and Horticultural Society, especially in the planning of memorial gates, which included car and pedestrian entrances, cenotaph pillars and ticket boxes. He was also active in erecting the gates with others from the RSL where he rose to become vice president in ’45.
By 1949 David had gained approval to construct his house in Agnes Street, then in 1954 gained approval for his plans to construct a workshop and office on North Terrace.
David’s mother, Decima died in March, 1950 aged 57. His father, Roy lived to enjoy his growing family of grandchildren and died aged 77 in April 1968. Both are buried in Mount Gambier.
Aged 92, David died on May 10th 2016 in Western Australia. Just a month later on the 9th June Cynthia also died. Both were cremated and their remains are in the Pinnaroo Valley Memorial Park.
Researched and written by Kaye Lee, daughter of Bryan Holmes SX8133, 2/48th Battalion.

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