RIFLE CLUB MEMBER’S SECOND WORLD WAR SERVICE RECOGNISED

Sep 23, 2020 | History, Member Association News, NQLD

Article by Bruce A R Scott

Jock Hucker began rifle shooting in 1947/48 immediately after the rifle clubs emerged out of recess post the Second World War. As a new shooter, he was a member of the Woorndoo Rifle Club (where his father William Hucker was also a member) and later the Willaura Rifle Club, also in Victoria. Moving with his young family to North Queensland 41 years ago, Jock joined the Townsville Marksmen Rifle Club (TMRC) in November 1979, just before the first prize shoot was conducted on the then newly established and club owned Hervey’s Range Shooting Complex.

Jock’s shooting successes include winning the Corangamite Shield (Victoria) in the 1970s and being runner-up to Gina Black on one occasion.  Today, Jock continues to be a licensed shooter and an active club member.

The Hucker family committed to Australia’s Second World War effort, with all of Jock’s five brothers and sisters serving in some capacity.  Jock Hucker was the youngest of the family of six children:

  • No 1 – Eldest brother, Bob Hucker, served in the Volunteer Defence Corps (VDC) and was allocated Army No V361846.
  • No 2 – Leslie Allan Hucker, served in a Light Horse Unit in Victoria.
  • No 3 – Mavis Hucker, Jock’s eldest sister, dedicated her life to the Red Cross.  Mavis never married.
  • No 4 – Gladys Hucker, the youngest sister, served as a nurse in the ‘big’ military hospital in Melbourne.  Gladys was allocated Army No VFX151519.
  • No 5 – Sergeant Charles Douglas Hucker (Service No 400674), served in the Royal Australian Air Force from October 1940 and was lost on an anti-submarine patrol out of Mareeba, North Queensland, on 12th June 1942.  The Beaufort aircraft and crew never returned.
  • No 6 – John Munro (Jock) Hucker, served in the Volunteer Defence Corps (VDC) and was allocated Army No V362151.

Jock Hucker was born 23rd December 1924 and enlisted at his home town of Lake Bolac, Victoria, in 1942 – age 18.  He served with the 7th Battalion VDC and was mobilised on 19th April 1944 to 24th September 1945.

Jock’s late wife, Jillian, was a Sergeant in the Royal Air Force and they married on 1st April 1950.

On Sunday 20th September 2020, Jock Hucker, at 95+ years of age, was presented with the 75th Anniversary of the End of the Second World War – Australia Remembers 2020 Certificate and the End of the Second World War Commemorative Medallion.  The official presentation was performed at the Townsville Marksmen Rifle Club by Mr Bill Whitburn, OAM, Vice President of the Queensland RSL. 

The certificate reads: “For your service and contribution to the war effort and to the freedom of nations” and is signed by the His Excellency General the Honourable David Hurley AC, DSC (Retd) and The Honourable Scott Morrison MP Prime Minister of Australia.

Mr Bill Whitburn, Vice President Qld RSL (left), Mr Jock Hucker, Member TMRC (centre)
and Brigadier Bruce Scott (Retd), President NRAA (right)

It is considered very appropriate that Jock Hucker was recognised on Sunday at his rifle club, because before Federation rifle clubs were a part of State Defence Forces and post Federation, to about 1960, rifle clubs were administered by the Army.

Present to witness this special presentation was Jock’s son, Andrew, many of his proud fellow rifle club members and a number of members of the Townsville RSL leadership group.

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