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McBEAN, Lachlan William (1924-2019)

McBEAN, Lachlan William (1924-2019)

L W McBean (Cricket 1941)

L W McBean (Cricket 1941)

Lachlan William McBean was a boarder at Geelong College from 16 February 1939 to December 1942. His address at enrolment was High St, Seymour and he had previously attended Seymour Higher Elementary School. At College, he was a member of the 1st Cricket XI and 1st Football XVIII in both 1941 and 1942. He captained the 1st Cricket XI and the 1st Football XVIII in 1942. He was also a School Prefect. His Victorian Birth Index entry and World War II papers record his first name as 'Lauchlan'.

He was a son of Alexander McBean and Elsie Mary, (nee Bolger), of 'Windouran', Moulamein, New South Wales.

During World War II, he enlisted (No. 430629) in the RAAF on 26 February 1943, training at 38 Course Narrandera (DH 82 Tiger Moths), 39 Course Mallala (Avro Ansons); in England at 15 (P) AFU (Airspeed Oxford), 27 OTU (Wellingtons at RAF Station Church Broughton, September 1944 - February 1945), and at 1668 Heavy Conversion Unit (Lancasters at RAF Station Bottesford).

Becoming a Flight Lieutenant (F/Lt), he flew a total of 441 hours, on DH82 Tiger Moth, Avro Anson, Airspeed Oxford, Vickers Wellington, and Avro Lancaster aircraft. The English pilots from his 1668 (Lancaster) Heavy Conversion Unit flew to Italy to bring home Prisoners of War. At war's end he was discharged from 9ACHU on 27 February 1946.

'Lachie' McBean, born at Sandringham on 9 June 1924, died on 15 February 2019, age 94 years.

Marg McBean wrote of Lachlan: 'Lachie' married Alisoun Elder from Rokewood and they lived at their Lismore farming property for 60 years, raising three children and developing a wool-growing enterprise. They were committed environmental conservationists and made valuable contributions to the community through involvement in many organisations. 'Lachie' continued to take an interest in sport, including playing cricket for The Lismore Cricket Club until the age of 53. In 2015 Alisoun and 'Lachie' moved to Ballarat. Alisoun died soon afterwards and 'Lachie' continued to live independently by Lake Wendouree where he was a familiar figure, riding his bicycle, studying wildlife and continuing involvement in local activities.'

His son, Sandy also attended Geelong College.

Sources: 'Geelong Collegians at the Second World War and Subsequent Conflicts' by J. Affleck p358 (citing The Pegasus; Australian War Memorial; National Archives; Lachie McBean's Recollections); Geelong Advertiser 23 February 2019; Ad Astra June 2019 p53; Tribute courtesy of Marg McBean. OGC 1937.
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