HMAS Canberra

This site is dedicated to all Royal Australian Navy and Australian Defence Force personnel who have served in HMAS CANBERRA.


HMAS CANBERRA (1) D 33 from the 9th of July 1928 until she was sunk in action off Savo Island on the 9th of August 1942.


HMAS CANBERRA (2) FFG-02 from the 21st of March 1981 until Decomissioning on the 12th of November 2005.


HMAS Canberra (3) LHD-02 from Commissioning on the 23rd of November 2014.



Vale ex CPOCD Gary Williamson- HMAS Canberra Commissioning Crew


Garry Williamson has been tragically killed in a Motor Vehicle Accident in LAOS on Wednesday 10 November 2010.

Garry Williamson was born in Boxhiil in Victoria and was raised in Chelsea, he joined the Royal Australian Navy as a recruit Underwater Weapons Sailor on the 03 April 1979, on completion of his initial training at HMAS Cerberus he transferred to the Clearance Diver (CD) Category, he was posted to HMAS Penguin and underwent CD Training in 1980, on completion of his Training he was posted to his first Clearance Diving team for 12 months.

Gary joined NUSHIP Canberra on the 31 January 1981 as the Diving Yeoman and was a member of the HMAS Canberra Commissioning Crew on the 21 March 1981.Gary was promoted to Able Seaman in May 1981; he departed HMAS Canberra in August 1982 and re-joined HMAS Penguin. Gary married his wife Judy on the 26th June 1982, his daughter Shara arrived in 1983.

HMAS Canberra Ship's Divers 1981

In 1985 Garry was posted to HMAS Lonsdale where he was promoted to a Leading Seaman, he continued in various Diving and Seamanship roles until his posting to HMAS Penguin in 1987 where he completed his Advanced Clearance Diving Course in August 1987, he was promoted to a Petty Officer in 1987 and took up the Duties as a Clearance Diving Instructor.

In 1991 he was posted to the Guided Missile Frigate HMAS Darwin for 6 months and then moved on to a Clearance Diving Team in an Operational Support role,  in 1992 Garry was posted to Victoria where he served in HMAS Lonsdale and HMAS Cerberus until 1993.
Gary joined HMAS Kuttabul in 1993 where he was working with the Reserve Diving Team until 1994 when he was posted to HMAS Waterhen as the Staff Officer for 5 Clearance Diving (SO5CD) as a part of the Mine Warfare Diving Force.

In 1996 Gary was posted to the to the Clearance Diving Team in Sydney NSW to a tactical Diving role, he was promoted to a Chief Petty Officer Diver in 1998 and posted to HMAS Penguin as the Chief Instructor for Mine Counter Measures (MCM).

In 2000 he was posted to HMAS Kuttabul and participated in Operation Gold in support of the Sydney Olympic Games, later that year he joined NUSHIP Diamantina as the Diving Supervisor  and went ashore to HMAS Waterhen where he worked as Human Resources Manager until his discharge in 2002.

Chief Petty Officer Gary Wiliamson retired from the RAN 0n the 03 April 2002 after 23 years of dedicated and Loyal Service. Since his retirement from the Royal Australian Navy he has been working clearing Explosive Ordnance Disposal Company clearing land of unexploded Ordnance overseas.

Garry was a member of the Commissioning Crew of HMAS Canberra in 1981, he was affectionately know as "Baby Bubbles" and will be sadly missed by his former shipmates who along with his Family and Naval Diving Community are mourning his loss.



Toora Pub, Victoria Send Off - 2010

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Garry was laid to rest at a private cremation held by his Family in Toora in Victoria. A send off was held at the Toora Pub in Memory of Gary that was attended by Friends, his wife Judy and Family.


Harbord Beach Hotel, Sydney Send Off - 08 January 2011


Members of the HMAS Canberra Commissioning Crew farewell Gary


A Send Off for Bungy was held in Sydney at the Harbord Beach Hotel - Freshwater on the 08 January 2011. Forty of his friends attended the wake to remember him


Friends and Colleauges farewell Bung in Sydney

A Tribute to Gary...More

Rest in Peace


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