- A.N. Other and NHSA Webmaster
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- December 2005 edition of the Naval Historical Review (all rights reserved)
After Allan had spent two days in the sick bay, Admiral Sir George Francis Hyde apologised to him for not launching a boat, explaining that in the rough weather the boat’s crew might have been lost as well. Allan could think of saying only: “Thank you very much, sir.”
On the outbreak of war in 1939, Allan was drafted to the armed merchant cruiser HMS Moreton Bay, which was fitting out in Sydney for patrol and convoy escort duties on the China Station and the South Atlantic. He was promoted to Acting Boatswain in July 1942 and became an instructor at the officers’ training school, where he was assessed as “a man of outstanding qualities and an excellent influence on the young men in his charge”.
Two years later Allan was sent to HMAS LADAVA (base), at Milne Bay in New Guinea, as piermaster, where he was credited with creating “order out of confusion”. Next he was appointed to the cruiser HMAS Australia in Seeadler Harbour; but when he arrived she had already sailed for operations. The officer who took his place was killed in a kamikaze attack.
Allan retired in the rank of lieutenant in 1948 to a farm at Somerville, Victoria, where he grew fruit and raised cattle and chickens. He did not take part in Anzac Day parades, but maintained an interest in contemporary naval affairs.
The Telegraph (UK) (Contributed by Gordon Angus Mackinlay)
Lieutenant Allen was accorded a full State naval funeral at HMAS CERBERUS.