Roland Maurice Charles George BEARD

BEARD , Roland Maurice Charles George

Service Number: SX700014
Enlisted: 5 August 1947
Last Rank: Captain
Last Unit: British Commonwealth Occupation Forces, Japan
Born: Birmingham, England , 14 February 1924
Home Town: Medindie, Walkerville, South Australia
Schooling: St Peter's College, Adelaide, South Australia
Occupation: Medical Practitioner
Died: 2010, cause of death not yet discovered, place of death not yet discovered
Cemetery: Not yet discovered
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Peacekeeping Service

5 Aug 1947: Enlisted Australian Army (Post WW2), Captain, SN SX700014, British Commonwealth Occupation Forces, Japan

World War 2 Service

7 Jan 1949: Discharged SN SX700014

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Biography contributed by Annette Summers

BEARD Roland Maurice Charles Georges



Roland Maurice Charles Georges Beard was born on 14th February 1924 in Birmingham, Warwickshire, England, where his father was completing his specialist degree.  He was the son of Dr Jack Roland Stanley Grose Beard MC, gynaecologist and obstetrician, and Andrée, nee Raquet. His father met his mother, when she was sixteen years of age, in France prior to the Battle of the Somme when he was billeted to her family’s château. Her parents said if he wanted to marry her he was to return after the war. After his discharge his father went back to France and they were married on 15th November 1921 in Daours, Picardie, France.  His parents then immigrated to Australia on the SS Bendigo, in 1925. Beard was educated at St Peter’s College and studied medicine at the University of Adelaide graduating MB BS in 1946. He was awarded the Archibald Watson prize for surgical anatomy in 1946. He was also awarded the T.G. Wilson travelling scholarship in obstetrics by the University of Adelaide. As a boy he was thought to have a cardiac murmur and advised not to participate in energy-sapping sport. This did not stop him from swimming or being accepted into the Army.

Like several of his graduating colleagues at the time he joined the Army as a Captain in the AAMC. He saw service in Rabaul, New Britain and was sent to Japan as part of the BCOF from 1947-1949. During this posting he was given the onerous task of officiating at the execution by firing squad of Japanese officers convicted of war crimes. He developed a great respect for the Japanese and later learnt to speak their language. Following that service he returned to Adelaide and was appointed to the Queen Victoria Hospital in 1949 and as a Registrar at the Royal Adelaide Hospital in 1950. He went to the United Kingdom on 3rd February 1951 to study Obstetrics and Gynaecology at St Mary’s Hospital for Women and Children in Manchester and, in 1952, at the General Hospital in Sunderland. He returned Australia on the Oronsay in 1952.

Following appointments at the Queen Victoria, Royal Adelaide Hospital and Queen Elizabeth Hospital on 6th May 1954 Beard was appointed an Honorary Obstetrician at TQEH along with Gilbert Aitken and Frank Welch.  After his resignation from TQEH, Beard became an Honorary Obstetrician, a position he held until his retirement from public work in the late 1970s.  Beard was known as a very competent clinician who was always ready to help his colleagues with difficult cases. His father had instilled in him a strong work ethic. He wrote and had published a number of scientific articles including a well circulated book, in 1970, entitled Contraception without the Pill (Sun Books Pty. Ltd.)  Beard married twice, his first to Christine Joyner and they had three children: John, who followed the footsteps of his father and grandfather into medicine, Eleanor, an editor and Robert, a plumber. Subsequently to Geraldine Keane and finally he had an enduring friendship with Daphne Liebeldt.                                                                                                                                                 After the early diagnosis which had prevented him from playing sport as a child, Beard, later in life, greatly appreciated sailing as a member of the Henley Sailing Club and playing golf as a member of the Royal Adelaide Golf Club. He also liked surfing, snow skiing and playing bridge. Most of all, he enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. Roland Maurice Charles Georges Beard died in 2010.


Blood, Sweat and Fears II: Medical Practitioners of South Australia on Active Service After World War 2 to Vietnam 1945-197.

Summers, Swain, Jelly, Verco

Uploaded by Annette Summers AO RFD