Skip navigation

Two Grandfathers, Should Have Been For Me

Raymond James Brownell (1894–1974)

Ray Brownell was educated at Scotch College Melbourne, and trained as accountant. Just a month after the outbreak of World War I, he joined the Australian Imperial Force (AIF). In September 1914 he sailed from Melbourne on HMAT Geelong, and he served with the 9th Battery at Gallipoli and on the Western Front.

In 1916 Brownell was recommended for the Military Medal. During that year he also transferred to the newly formed Royal Flying Corp. He took to the air like a duck to water and became known as a Flying Ace.

After the war Brownell did not return to his former civilian life for long. In 1921 he took a permanent commission with the Royal Australian Air Force, and in time was elevated to the rank of Air Commodore. Brownell served throughout the Second World War, in the Pacific, Papua New Guinea and southeast Asia.

Photo of Ray Brownell taken in 1915, posing on a camel at Mena Camp, near Cairo, Egypt.
Photo of Ray Brownell taken in 1915, posing on a camel at Mena Camp, near Cairo, Egypt.

Copyright © Roar Film 2012 This material may be reproduced, communicated, published and adapted free of charge for non-commercial educational purposes.

Site Credits Opens in a new window