Eric J. Jewell Award

 

Through the generosity of Eric Jewell's family, the Eric J. Jewell Award page is dedicated to be a take-off point for telling his story and offering financial support to Australian youth, and specifically Australian Air Force Cadets (AAFC).  Commanding Officers of AAFC squadrons will be able to apply for support from 2019 via the submission process detailed further below.


Life and War Service

Flying Officer (FLGOFF) Eric John Jewell (RAAF Service no. 410161) was second pilot in the Vickers Wellington aircraft with 458 Squadron. His life story is outlined on the Servicemen’s Stories page.

Eric took part in a number of operations, and perhaps most notable is his and 458 Squadron’s involvements in Operation Dragoon, starting the 15th of August, 1944. This Operation came to be known as the “second D-Day landings”, and was spearheaded from the Mediterranean Sea, into southern France and Nazi-occupied French ports. Page 611 of the 458 Squadron's Unit History confirms the Squadron’s involvement in commenting, “This has been a momentous week. The Squadron is really in the “front line” of the invasion.” The operation Eric and his crew flew on 16th of August 1944 in aircraft with serial no. HF360 is the same Mk. X (“Mark 10”) variant of the Wellington as aircraft HF344 shown below.

Photo of Eric with crew members, Bone (Algeria) early 1944
Photo of Eric with crew members, Alghero (Sardinia) mid-1944
Extract of 458 Unit History, page 632, operation on 16-Aug-1944. Note the flight details, and the ports of Sète, Toulon and Port-Saint-Louis(-du-Rhone)
Two Mk. X Vickers Wellingtons at Alghero, Sardinia. Aircraft with serial no. HF344 is in the foreground (image courtesy Australian War Memorial)
The invasion pathways Southern France, Aug 1944. Click to enlarge for the ports of Sète and Toulon, and the Rhone river’s entry point to the Mediterranean Sea (Port-Saint-Louis-du-Rhone)
 

The Inaugural Eric J. Jewell Award Recipient

The inaugural Eric J. Jewell Award was presented to number 3 Wing AAFC and Flight Lieutenant Sharon O’Donnell for their 2018 Western Front Tour of France and Belgium. This tour will notably mark the centennial year since the signing of the Armistice in 1918 to end WWI. Fifteen Cadets and ten AAFC adult staff are currently on tour from the 14th to the 26th of April 2018. The tour is tracing a number of the significant battlefields, cemeteries, and memorials of WWI, and also the site of the Normandy D-DAY Landings of WWII. ANZAC DAY 2018 will be held at Villers-Bretonneux, with Flight Lieutenant O’Donnell and 4 cadets taking part in official ceremonial proceedings.

The Award has contributed to the purchase of official AAFC clothing to be provided to all participants, with the design on each participant’s Hoodie shown below.

Embroidery for Cadet 'Seth' on his AAFC clothing, and tribute to Eric Jewell

AAFC Submissions for Funding

For prospective Award recipients starting from 2019, AAFC Squadron representatives are invited to submit an application for funding for new or existing Cadets, or Cadet programs. An application form will soon be available to download. You may use the Contact Us page for further enquiries. Here is the Information Sheet.